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3 LIBRARY;-'/ 
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3 1924 098 140 704 




Cornell University 

The original of this book is in 
the Cornell University Library. 

There are no known copyright restrictions in 
the United States on the use of the text. 

In compliance with current 

copyright law, Cornell University 

Library produced this 

replacement volume on paper 

that meets the ANSI Standard 

Z39.48-1992 to replace the 

irreparably deteriorated original. 








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1609- 1884. 



Vol. II. 


L. i-E. EVERTS & CO. 

Copyright, 1884, by L. H. Everts & Co. 

5 ^ 






Manners and Customs, 1700-1800 .... 858 


Amusements of the Philadelphians . . . . 939 


Inns, Taverns, Ordinaries, Coffee-Houses, and Hotels 980 

Military . . . . . .... 998 


Art and Artists 1029 


Music, Musicians, and Musical Societies ... 1075 

Clubs and Club Life . . . ..... 1092 


Authors and Literature of Philadelphia 1099 

Libraries and Historical and Scientific Societies .... 1173 


Religious Denominations . . . . . 1229 


Charitable and Benevolent and Religious Associations 1449 

The Bench and Bar . . 1491 


Medical Profession . . . . 1578 


Prominent Women in Philadelphia History . . . . .... 1685 




Academy of Music (Exterior) 1084 

Academy of Music (Interior) 1085 

Academy of Natural Sciences 1203 

Acrelius, Israel 1239 

Agnew, D. Hayes 1626 

Allen, Richard 1397 

American Baptist Publication Society . . . 1489 

Apprentices' Library ....... 1209 

Arnold, Mrs. Benedict (Peggy Shippen) . . . 1692 

Asbury, Francis 1395 

AthenjEum Library Building 1207 

Biddle, Nicholas 1539 

Bingham, William 1180 

Bingham, Mrs. William 1693 

Binney, Horace 1541 

Blue Anchor Inn 981 

Book-Plate of Dr. Benjamin Rush .... 1188 

Braddock's Grave 1002 

Brown, Charles Brockden 1133 

Brown, Dayid Paul 1549 

Cadwalader, Dr. Thomas 1581 

Carey, Mathew 1141 

Carpenter's Mansion 854 

Carr, Benjamin 1077 

Carroll, Mrs. Charles, Jr. . . . \ ■ ■ 1696 

Cathcart, William 1310 

Cathedral of Sts. Peter and Paul .... 1385 

Central Congregational Church .... 1408 

Chandler, Joseph R 1171 

Chapman, Nathaniel 1612 

Charitable Institutions 1*50 

Chestnut Street Theatre, First (Interior) . . 971 

Christ Church, First 1342 

Christ Church 1345 

Christ Church Chimes 1344 

Church of St. James the Less 1354 

churche8 of philadelphia .... . 1230 

Claghorn, J. L 1072 

Clare's Inn 982 

Clay, J. C 1240 

Coat of Arms of 'James Logan 1174 

Continental Hotel 998 


Costumes 890 

Costumes 916 

Coxe, Tench 1135 

Cream Pot presented to Henry Hill by Benjamin 

Franklin 859 

Cuyler, Theodore 1546 

Dallas, A. J 1526 

Dunlap's (John) House 926 

Du Ponceau, P. S 1123 

D'yrujo, Marchioness (Sally McKean) . . . 1695 

Election Scene in Front of State-House in 1815 . 938 

Elwyn, Alfred L 1462 

Forrest, Edwin 976 

Fourth of July Celebration in Centre Square 

in 1819 936 

Friends' Meeting-House near Merion . . . 1244 

Folton, Robert 1040 

Furness, William Henry 1406 

Godfrey's (Thomas) House 872 

Graeme, Thomas 1579 

Gross, S. D 1624 

Hahnemann Medical College 1658 

Hamilton, Andrew 1501 

Hebrew Synagogue (Broad Street) .... 1442 

Hominy Man 930 

Hopeinson, Francis 1521 

Hopkinson, Joseph 1533 

Hospitals in Philadelphia 1664 

Hutter, Edwin W 142S 

Hutter, Elizabeth E. 1456 

Jefferson Medical College 1649 

Jefferson Medical College Hospital . . . 1678 

Kelley, William D 1550 

Lay, Benjamin 1120 

Leidy, Joseph 1619 

Lewis, William 1527 

Lutheran Church (1743) 1420 

McKean, Thomas 1516 

Mercantile Library 1212 

Meredith, William M 1542 

Moore, Thomas 928 

Moravian Church (1742) 1323 





Mott, Lucretia 1697 

Muhlenberg, G. H. E 1124 

New Jerusalem Church (Swedenborgian) . . 1435 

Norris (Charles) Mansion 870 

Norris, Isaac 1500 

Pancoast, Joseph 1620 

Pastorius House (Germantown) 895 

Patriots' Pew in Christ Church .... 1335 

Peale, Charles Wilson 1036 

Pemberton Plantation 1668 

Penn's Silver Tea Sertice 859 

Pennsylvania Academy op Fine Arts (Old) . . 1070 

Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts . ■ . 1071 

Pennsylvania Historical Society (Old Building) . 1220 

Pennsylvania Historical Society .... 1221 

Penny Pot-House 981 

Peters, Richard 1529 

Philadelphia, from State-House Steeple . frontispiece 

Philadelphia Library (Interior) .... 1185 

Physick, P. S 1604 

Poulson, Zachariah 1166 

Presbyterian Church, Associate .... 1276 

Presbyterian Church, Second 1272 

Presbyterian Church, Third 1267 

Price, Eli K 1536 

Proud, Robert 1130 

Read, T. Buchanan 1172 

Redman, John 1592 

Reed, Henry 1152 

Reformed Church, First 1411 

Ridgway, Jacob .... ... 1187 

Ridgway Branch op the Philadelphia Library . 1182 

Roche, M. B 1434 

Rush, Benjamin 1590 

Rush, Dr. James 1186 


Rush, Mrs. James 1186 

Sartain, John 1060 

Seal op Philadelphia Library 1180 

Sergeant, John 1535 

Sharswood, George 1548 

Sheppard, Furman 1552 

Shippen, Edward 1509 

Shippen's (Edward) Mansion 871 

Simpson, Matthew 1400 

Smith, John Jay 1184 

Smith, William 1126 

Southwark Theatre, Old 966 

St. George's Methodist Episcopal Church . . 1396 

St. Joseph's Church, 1776 1371 

Stocks 857 

Stuart, Gilbert 1043 

Sully, Thomas 1047 

Swedes' Church (Gloria Dei) 1234 

Tilghman, William 1513 

Tunker Church (Germantown) 1315 

Union League Club-House 1097 

United States Naval Asylum 1669 

Vaui, Richard 1544 

Watchman, Old 858 

Watson, John Fanning 1169- 

Webb, Thomas 1394 

West, Benjamin 1032 

White, William 1332 

Wicaco Block-House 1024 

Williamson, Hugh 1146 

Wistar, Caspar 1594 

Wood, George B 1602 

Wood, James F 1386 

Young Men's Christian Association Building . . 1488 

Zinzendorff, Count 1320' 





What would have been William Penn's amaze- 
ment if, on his leaving Philadelphia, in 1701, he 
could have had a vision of the future ; if he had been 
told that three-quarters of the new century would 
barely have elapsed when the bells of that city would 
ring their joyful peals in honor of the birth of a 
nation, and " proclaim liberty throughout the land 
to all the inhabitants thereof;" if, peering still farther 
into that mysterious future, he had seen that nation, 
standing a giant amidst its elders, a living example 
of the blessings of freedom ? But Penn, however far- 
sighted, had no such vision. Neither can we, even 
in this wonderful progressive age, pierce the veil of 
futurity and read what changes another century 
shall bring. The past alone is ours, and if, looking 
into that past, we see, with the mind's eye, the City 
of Brotherly Love as it was when ita founder left it, 
never to return, and then turn to the Philadelphia of 
to-day, the contrast will be almost as great a matter of 
wonder to us as the vision would have been to Penn. 

And yet the origin of Philadelphia is not hidden 
in the mist of ages, like that of the ancient cities of 
the Old World ; it is not legendary, we need not accept 
uncertain facts from tradition, although more than 
two centuries have passed away since the first white 
man's cabin was built on the shore of the Delaware, 
and our fathers were participators in the struggle 
for liberty to which we owe our being as a nation. We 
should be too familiar with our history to wonder at it. 
But the rapidity of the changes that occurred in the last 
century has done the work of ages. Old landmarks 
have been swept off, records destroyed, the chain of 
events broken, so to speak. So busy, so hurried is 
life in our day, that we scarcely note the changes that 
take place around us. It must be the historian's task 
to collect the scattered material ere it is lost, to restore 
the missing links of facts ere they are disfigured by 
tradition, and by his pen-pictures of the past to at- 
tach a new interest to objects and sites amidst which 
we live unmindful of the memories they awake. 

Philadelphia, at the beginning of the eighteenth 

century, was an object of curious interest to the 
stranger. Its green meadows, blooming gardens, and 
noble forest-trees endowed it with a sylvan beauty 
which the lover of nature, the seeker of peaceful 
rest, must have found very attractive, while the prac- 
tical observer could not but be struck with the bus- 
tling activity which already reigned about its wharves, 
its mills and shops, and the hopeful, contented air of 
its inhabitants. 

The first few years of the eighteenth century did 
not bring much change in the mode of life or the cos- 
tume of the Philadelphians, but they brought much 
improvement in the general appearance of the city. 
Many new houses were built, of brick, and generally 
two or three stories high. Some of these houses had 
a balcony, usually a front porch, — a feature of vast im- 
portance in house-building, for it became customary 
for the ladies of the family in pleasant weather to sit 
on the porch, after the labor of the day was over, and 
spend the evening in social converse. In those early 
days, and for a long time after, the young ladies of 
Philadelphia did not think it disgraceful to help in 
the housework ; a few, having a large retinue of ser- 
vants, and being gifted with artistic tastes, devoted 
themselves to painting, or did fancy needle-work ; 
none were positively idle. But when the sun went 
down they were dressed and ready for the porch- 
parade ; there neighbors came for a chat about those 
engrossing subjects, dress and housekeeping ; friends 
called, and beaux strutted by in powdered wigs, 
swords, square-cut coats, tights, and silk stockings, 
running the gauntlet of all those bright eyes in order to 
lift the three-cornered hat to some particular fair one, 
and to dream about the sweet smile received in return. 

If we are to believe the old chroniclers, love-making 
was a very tame affair then. The " girl of the period" 
did not yet exist, though the " dude" might, under 
another name ; young ladies received company with 
their mammas, and the bashful lover, in the presence 
of the old folks, had to resort to tender glances and 
softly-whispered vows. Marriages were ordered pro- 
mulgated by affixing the intentions of the parties on 
the court-house and meeting-house doors, and when 
the act was solemnized, they were required [by law] to 
have at least twelve subscribing witnesses. But true 
love laughs at shackles and bolts, the poet says ; and 
Watson's " Annals" tells us the history of the elope- 




ment (in 1707) of Col. Coxe with Sarah Eckley, a 
Friend and wealthy heiress. The funny part of the 
story is that the runaway couple, hastening through 
the Jersey woods in the night-time, met the chaplain 
of Lord Cornbury, the then Governor of New Jersey, 
and prevailed upon him to marry them, then and 
there, by fire-light. 

The wedding entertainments must have been more 
of a nuisance than a pleasure, either for the parents 
or the young couple. They were inspired by a con- 
ception of unbounded hospitality, very common at 
that time. Even the Quakers accepted them with 
good grace until the evil consequences of too free 
drinking on those occasions compelled them to 
counsel more moderation. There was feasting dur- 
ing a whole day, and for the two following days 
punch was dealt out ad libitum to all comers. The 
gentlemen invited to partake of these libations were 
received by the groom on the first floor ; then they 
ascended to the second floor, where they found the 
bride surrounded by her bridesmaids, and every one 
of the said gentlemen, be they one hundred, kissed 
the bride, so says the chronicle. It is to be hoped that 
the gentle bridesmaids took pity on the poor bride, and 
out of sheer generosity offered themselves in sacrifice 
to share the attentions of those gallant gentlemen. 

On Second Street, corner of 
Norris Alley, was a commodious 
house, known as the Slate-roof 
House, and built before 1700 by 
James Porteus for Samuel Car- 
penter, who sold it to Penn. 
A very full description of this 
house, as well as of the house of 
Edward Shippen, first mayor of 
Philadelphia, of whom it was 
said that "he was distinguished 
for three great things, — the big- 
gest person, the biggest house, 
and the biggest coach," — has 
been given in the notes to pages 
158, 159. The same notes con- 
tain biographical sketches of 
Shippen and Samuel Carpenter. 
We may add here that the last- 
named worthy citizen, who did 
so much toward building up the 
young city, left a numerous pos- 
terity. The Carpenter family of New Jersey are his j 
descendants in the male line, while the female line is | 
represented by the Whartons, Fishbournes, Merediths, 
Clymers, and Reads, all of Philadelphia. 

A substantial brick building had been erected by 
Robert Turner so far back as 16S5, at the northeast 
corner of Front and Arch Streets. A little later, he 
built, near the other, on Front Street, a large brick 
house, three stories high, "besides a good large brick 
cellar under it, of two bricks and a half thickness in 
the wall." 

Robert Turner, in his letter describing his buildings, 
goes on to speak of the brick houses of Arthur Cook, 
William Frampton, John Wheeler, Samuel Carpen- 
ter, John Test, and others, all which houses, he says, 
have balconies. 

William Frampton, Samuel Carpenter, and Robert 
Turner had established wharves under Penn's patent. 
Turner's patent was for Mount wharf, below Arch 
Street; Carpenter's for Carpenter's wharf, between 
Walnut and Dock Streets; and Frampton's for the 
lower wharf, between Dock and Spruce Streets. 

The conditions of these patents are interesting as 
showing how Penn endeavored to preserve the bank 
on the east side of Front Street from being built 
upon ; and also as indicating how King Street, after- 
ward Water Street, was established. After reciting 
that permission is granted to " erect a wharf or quay, 
and to build houses thereon, for ye better improve- 
ment of ye place, as well as for his own particular 
profit," the deed provides that the said grantee, 

"his heirs and assigns, do and shall in convenient timu leave and make 
a sufficient cartway under and along by ye front of ye said banke, thirty 
foot wide, for ye common use of all persons in ye day tinie ; and also to 
make and erect convenient stairs, or other access, from y.e water to ye 
said wharf, and from ye said wharf to ye sti-eet, by ye name of lower 
wharf, and to keep them in repair — to be for ye common use of all per- 
sons forever. Provided, also, that ye said William Frampton, his heirs 

[From an old drawing in Philadelphia Library.] 

and assigns, do not. erect or raise any buildings above four feet above ye 
top of ye said banke, unless hereafter any person shall have privilege 
to build higher, 1 ' etc. 

Joshua Carpenter, the brother of Samuel, built a 
fine mansion on Chestnut Street, between Sixth and 
Seventh Streets — at the time a rural spot, remote from 
what was known as " the city," and where a citizen 
might have his country-seat. The grounds were 
beautifully laid out, and the fruit-trees and garden 
shrubbery for a long time attracted visitors. Many 
associations are connected with this house. Governor 



Thomas occupied those premises from 1738 to 1747. 
We are told by Watson that the Governor's amiable 
lady endeared herself to the young folks by indulging 
the pretty misses with bouquets and nosegays on 
May-day, and permitting the boys to help themselves 
from her fine cherry-trees. 

There at one time lived with her father, Dr. Graeme, 
the celebrated Mrs. Ferguson, the poetess. Mrs. 
Ferguson was the granddaughter of Sir William 

The Carpenter mansion changed hands several 
times; in 1761 it belonged to John Boss, attorney-at- 
law, who sold it to John Smith. In 1774 it became 
the property of Col. John Dickinson, who made great 
alterations to it, causing a new front, in modern style, 
to be made, facing on Chestnut Street. It then passed 
into the hands of Gen. Philemon Dickinson. During 
the war of Independence it was used as a military 
hospital. It was subsequently fitted up in magnifi- 
cent style, and became the residence of the Chevalier 
de Luzerne, who gave there a brilliant entertainment, 
with fire-works, in honor of the birth of the Dauphin 
of France. In 1779 it was occupied by Monsieur 
Gerard, the French ambassador. Finally, it became 
the property and residence of Judge Tilghman, who 
sold it to the Arcade Company in 1826. 

At the southwest corner of Third and Chestnut 
Streets was the magnificent mansion known as Clarke 
Hall. It was the property of William Clarke, of 
Lewes, a wealthy lawyer, who had been one of the 
members of the original Council of the Governor in 
1682-83, and collector of customs in 1692. Mr. Clarke 
bought the lot from Thomas Rouse, in 1694, and 
erected upon it a fine brick house, with a double front, 
two stories high, with a hipped roof. It was then con- 
sidered the largest house in town, and its fine garden 
was much admired. In 1704, Mr. Clarke conveyed 
his property to his son, William Clarke, Jr., on the 
occasion of the latter's approaching marriage with 
Rebecca Curtis, of Barbadoes. Young Clarke does 
not seem to have inherited his father's prudence and 
good management of his affairs, for in 1718 the As- 
sembly of Pennsylvania directed that the house and 
lot at the corner of Third and Chestnut Streets should 
be vested in Charles Read and other trustees, and sold 
for the benefit of the creditors of William Clarke, Sr., 
and William Clarke, Jr. The property was conveyed 
to Andrew Hamilton by Anthony Houston, who had 
purchased it from the trustees. But the Privy Coun- 
cil repealed the act of the Assembly providing for the 
sale of Clarke Hall. Suit was entered in the High 
Court of Chancery, in England, by the representatives 
of William Clarke, Jr. After long delays the case 
was decided against Andrew Hamilton. He had died 
pending the suit, and his son, James Hamilton, bought 
up the rights of the claimants, and sold Clarke Hall 
to Israel Pemberton in 1745. 

In 1701, Charles Read, merchant, purchased from 
Letitia Penn part of the large lot granted to her by 

William Penn four months previous. The piece sold 
was at the southwest corner of Front and Market 
Streets, measuring twenty-five feet front on the former 
by one hundred feet depth on the latter. It was con- 
sidered the best piece in the Letitia lot. Mr. Read 
built a house on the corner, two stories high, with a 
high gable forming a third story, with a low garret- 
room above. A heavy eave from the second story 
and gables timbered and squared near the apex, gave 
this house a very quaint appearance. 1 Mr. Read died 
in 1737, and two years later his widow sold the prop- 
erty to Israel Pemberton, who lived in it until he 
bought Clarke Hall. After his death it became the 
property of his son John. In 1754 a public coffee- 
house was established on the premises, which there- 
after was always known as the London Coffee-House. 
The want of a central coffee-house for the benefit of 
the merchants and traders had long been felt, and 
this one was established by subscription ; the trustees, 
George O'Neill, William Grant, William Fisher, and 
Joseph Richardson, intrusted the management to Wil- 
liam Bradford, who had been the first promoter of the 

The success of the enterprise very soon demonstrated 
how much the Want of such a place had been felt by 
the better class of people, who objected to frequenting 
noisy taverns. Merchants met at the Coffee-House 
and transacted business over a cup of the fragrant 
beverage ; the Governor and most of the high officials 
became regular habitu'es ; ship captains hastened to 
bring there their budget of news, and strangers of 
distinction were brought to the Coffee-House to form 
the acquaintance of leading men. It became the great 
auction mart, public vendues of horses, carriages, 
and even of slaves, being held under the large shed 
which extended from the house to the gutter on both 
front sides. 

Many exciting scenes took place in front of this 
popular resort during the troublous times which were 
the prelude to the Revolution. In 1765 bonfires were 
made of stamped parchment and of a Barbadoes 
paper bearing a stamp. In 1766, Capt. Wise, of the 
brig " Minerva," having brought from England the 
news of the repeal of the Stamp Act, was escorted to 
the Coffee-House amid the huzzas of an enthusiastic 
crowd and there treated to a huge bowl of punch, in 
which he drank " Prosperity to America." It was 
there, also, an indignant crowd burned in effigy 
Thomas Hutchinson, Governor of Massachusetts, and 

1 Charles Bead waB a person of considerable importance in the young 
province. Logan writes of him to Penn in 1702, in relation to some 
transactions in which he had acted as appraiser, that he took him, " with 
the mos^ here, to be a truly honest man." He held several important 
offices. He was a Common Councilman in 1716 ; alderman, 1726 ; and 
mayor of the city, 1726-27. He was sheriff of the county, 1729-31 ; jus- 
tice of the peace in 1718 until his death ; clerk of the Court of Quarter 
Sessions and Orphans 1 Court for some time before his death ; member of 
the Governor's Council, 1733; and judge of admiralty under the king, 
appointed 1736. All these were highly important positions, showing 
that Mr. Read was a man of moBt excellent character, trustworthy in 
all respects. — WestcoWs "Historic Mansions" 



Alexander Wedderburn, British solicitor-general, who 
had grossly insulted Dr. Franklin before the Privy- 
Council. There, at last, on the 8th of July, 1776, 
when the Declaration of Independence had been pub- 
licly read, the king's arms, taken down from the 
chamber of the Supreme Court* were carried in pro- 
cession and burned in the middle of the street, amid 
the cheers of the crowd. 

If we have been led to speak at some length of the 
old houses of Philadelphia, we must not overlook 
the fact that from the beginning the spiritual needs 
of her citizens were provided for. A history of her 
churches fills an entire chapter of this book. We 
shall merely mention here such as were in existence 
during the period of which we are describing the 
manners and customs. 

The Friends, naturally, since they were the most 
numerous, had several meeting-houses, the oldest 
being the Centre Square Meeting, erected in 1685. 
The Lutheran Swedes, after worshiping for several 
years in an old square block-house, attended service 
after 1700 in their beautiful church of Gloria Dei. 
The Church of England congregation had Christ 
Church erected in 1702. Previous to this date they 
had another church, the exact locality of which is 
not known, although there is proof that it existed 
since 1696. 

The Presbyterians and the Baptists, after meeting 
together for worship in a small store, separated. The 
Presbyterians erected their first church in 1704. The 
Baptists had a small wooden building on Second 
Street from 1707 to 1731, when they pulled it down 
and built a brick church. 

Catholics, by the laws of England, were not per- 
mitted to hold public worship, and the oldest chapel 
known to have been built by them was erected in 1753, 
in Willing's Alley. The first Lutheran Church was 
built in 1743 on Fifth Street. There was a large 
immigration of Germans, — forty thousand between 
1701 and 1725. Many Swiss came over, settling 
first near Germantown, then at Pequea, in Lancaster 
County. These immigrants, like the first settlers at 
Germantown, included a good many Mennonites. 
In 1708 this sect had a church at Germantown, with 
fifty-two members, Rev. Jacob Godtschalk, pastor. 1 

1 William Rittenhouse, Harman Casderp, Martin Kolb, Isaac Van 
Centern, Conrad Johnson, Henry Cassel, and their wives, Harman 
Taylor, John Key, Peter Caernects, Paul Klumpkes, Arnold Van 
FosseD, John Kolb, Wynant Bowman, John Gorgas, Cornelius Classen, 
Arnold Koster, Mary Tuynen, Helena Key, Gertrude Couriers, Mary 
Van Tossen, Barbara Kolb, Anna Bowman, Margaret Huberts, Mary 
Sullen, Elizabeth Husters, Margaret Tuysen, Allien Reveustock, John 
Nise, Hans Nise, John Lensen, Isaac Jacobs, Jacob Isaacs, Hendrick 
Sellen, John Connerts, Peter Keyser, Herman Koster, Christopher Zim- 
mermann, Sarah Van Centern, Civilia Connerts, Altien Tuysen, Catha- 
rine CaBselberg, Civilia Von Fossen. " Branches from this church were 
established at Skippack, Conestoga, Great Swamp, and Manatawny 
before and about 1726, and they had added as ministers Henry Kolb, 
Martin Kolb, Claes Johnson, Michael Zieglor, John Gorgas, John Cone- 
rads, Claus Bittinghousen, Hans Burgwaltzer, Christian Herr, Benedict 
Hirschy, Martin Beer, Johannes Bowman, Velte Clenier, Daniel Langa- 

The Moravian Church at the corner of Race and 
Bread Streets was built in 1742. The Methodist 
Church is of a later period. The first German Re- 
formed Church was built on Race Street, near Fourth 
Street, in 1747. 

It will be seen from the above list that the men of all 
denominations who came here to seek entire freedom 
of conscience and liberty of worship were not disap- 

But however prosperous the condition of the new 
city, its people soon became aware that even in this 
land of plenty, of which Pastorius said, " God has 
made of a desert an inclosed garden, and the plan- 
tation about it a fruitful field," there could be suf- 
fering, and that "the poor ye shall always have 
among ye" is no vain prediction. They built a poor- 
house on a green meadow extending from Spruce to 
Pine Street, and from Third to Fourth Street. This 
substantial, and, for the time, vast building also 
served the purpose of an asylum for the insane and a 
hospital. A large piazza ran round its four sides. 
The grounds were handsome, with many fine shade- 
trees. Altogether it was a noble charity. 

Another admirable foundation was the Quaker 
almshouse, on the south side of Walnut Street, be- 
tween Third and Fourth Streets, which was erected, 
according to tradition, on ground given to the society 
by John Martin in 1713, upon condition that they 
would support him for the remainder of his days. 

If Philadelphia had numerous churches for her 
God-fearing citizens and almshouses to shelter the 
poor and the sick, she had also to provide quarters 
for a class of persons less worthy of sympathy. With 
the increase of population there came an increase of 
crimes and disorders. Not that the character of her 
citizens had undergone a regretable change, but be- 
cause England emptied her jails upon the colony, and 
the title of redemptioner was a cloak under which 
many an evil-doer left his country " for his country's 
good," to prey upon the peace-loving community of 
Friends. For many years offenders were confined in 
"hired prisons," that is, in private houses, whose 
owners were paid to take care of the prisoners. An 
anecdote is told illustrative of the simplicity of these 
obliging jailers. In 1692, William Bradford, the 
printer, and John Macomb were implicated in the 
quarrels of George Keith with the Friends (no very 
grave offense), and were sent to prison for refusing 
to give security. The jailer, Patrick Robinson, after 
some time, granted them " the favor to go home, and, 
as they were still prisoners, when they wished to 
petition for their trial at the next sessions, they then 
went to the prison to write and sign it there ; but it 
happened the jailer was gone abroad and had the key 
with him. So, as they could not get in, they signed 

necker, and Jacob Beghtly." (Westcott'a " History," which seldom over- 
looks any of these minulirc of local history, and is very full in its 
details, nearly seventy-five chapters being devoted to the subjects 
treated of in this single chapter.) 



that paper in the entry or porch." As early as 1685 
the subject of building a prison was discussed, and 
Samuel Carpenter, H. Murray, and Nathaniel Allen 
reported to the Court of Quarter Sessions that they 
had treated with workmen and advised with Andrew 
Griscomb, carpenter, and William Hudson, brick- 
layer, about the form and dimensions. The project, 
however, was not carried out until 1695, when the 
prison was built on High Street. It must have been 
a very poor affair, for as early as 1702 the grand 

jury presented it as a 
common nuisance. The 
new prison, atthe south- 
west corner of Third and 
High Streets, for the 
construction of which 
an act had been passed 
, in 1718, was finished 
' in 1723, when the old 
building was torn down 
and the material sold. 
The whipping-post, pillory, and stocks were on High 
Street, in front of the market, and on the eastern side 
of Third Street. 

The building fronting on Third Street was for 
criminals. It was called the workhouse. Labor was 
deemed the best antidote to vice, and all offenders 
were put to work. The building fronting on High 
Street was called the debtor's jail. There the unfor- 
tunates who could not satisfy their creditors lingered 
until they could find persons to sell themselves unto Jot 
a term of years to pay the same (i.e., their debts), and 
redeem their bodies. This custom of selling men for 
debt only applied to single men; married men stayed 
in jail. Such was the fate of " imprudent" debtors. 
Fraud sent men to the pillory and the workhouse. 
The last remembered exhibition of the kind was that 
of a genteel storekeeper, who, to build up his sinking 
credit, had made too free with other people's names. 
He was exposed in the pillory, where the populace 
pelted him with eggs, and, to conclude, had his ears 
clipped by the sheriff. 

Whipping was the usual punishment for larceny 
and for felonious assaults. In 1743, a black man, 
brought up to the whipping-post to receive punish- 
ment, took out his knife and cut his throat before the 
officers could interfere. 

Murder, house-breaking, horse-stealing, and coun- 
terfeiting were punished by hanging. A case of 
burning at the stake is reported as having taken 
place at New Castle in 1731. Catherine Bevan was 
sentenced to be burned alive for the murder of her 
husband, and Peter Murphy, the servant, who assisted 
her in the commission of the crime, to be hanged. In 
order to mitigate the sufferings of the wretched woman, 
it was designed to strangle her before the flames reached 
her, by pulling on a rope fastened round her neck, but 
the flames leaping suddenly from the pile, burned the 
rope, which broke, and she fell struggling into the fire. 

We are horrified at the recital of these barbarous 
customs, but we should remember that the spirit of 
the laws of Pennsylvania was the same as governed 
the laws of England. The home government insisted 
upon the execution of the existing laws, and saw with 
jealous eyes any attempt at making new ones, even 
the civil laws necessary for the proper administration 
of the colony. Jonathan Dickinson, in 1715, writes 
that " our laws are mostly come back repealed, among 
which was our law of courts, and manner of giving 
evidence, whereupon we have no courts nor judicial 
proceedings these two years past." Isaac Norris also 
writes, "Things among us pretty well. Nothing very 
violent yet, but in civil affairs all stop. We have no. 
courts, no justice administered, and every man does 
what is right in his own eyes." 

On High Street, since called Market Street, there 
stood a mast supporting the great town bell. At the 
ringing of the bell the people assembled to listen to 
the royal and provincial proclamations, city ordi- 
nances, etc., which were read aloud by the town-crier, 
or beadle, from a stand at the foot of the mast. In 
1707 a court-house was erected on this site. It was a 
grand edifice for the time, and the early Philadel- 
phians, who called it the " Great Towne-House," or 
the " Guild Hall," were very proud of it. Beside the 
assessments and fines devoted to that purpose, many 
worthy citizens contributed, by voluntary gifts of 
money, to the expense of its erection. The first per- 
manent market-house was built in 1710, adjoining the 
court-house, from which it extended to about half- 
way to Third Street. 

It is pleasant to look over the records of the City 
Council and to study the patriarchal way in which 
the city was governed. A republican simplicity per- 
vades the acts of the city fathers ; a republican spirit, 
far ahead, of the age, seems to have inspired many of 
the measures adopted for the common good. We are 
apt to think of Philadelphia, even then, as of an 
American city, forgetting that a long and bloody 
revolution had to intervene ere it would have any 
right to that name. The Philadelphians were un- 
consciously making the apprenticeship of self-gov- 

The office of mayor was no sinecure in those days. 
It was held for one year, and the Council, under the 
charter, elected one of their number to serve as mayor. 
Far from coveting this honor, the good Philadelphians 
often made strenuous objections to having it thrust 
upon them, preferring even to pay a fine, — it varied 
from twenty to thirty pounds as the city grew, and 
with it the cares of the office. Thus, in 1704, Alder- 
man Griffith Jones is elected mayor, and prays that the 
fine of twenty pounds laid upon him for refusing to 
accept of the mayoralty the last year may be remitted 
him. In 1706, Alderman Story is fined twenty pounds 
for refusing the mayoralty. In 1745, Alderman Tay- 
lor was finSd thirty pounds for refusing to serve. The 
Council then elected Joseph Turner, who also refused, 



and was fined thirty pounds. The mayor and alder- 
men, after passing ordinances, gave their personal 
attention to having them carried out. They were, in 
every sense of the word, public servants. The mayor, 
once a month, " went the rounds to the respective 
bread-makers in this city," weighed the bread, and 
seized all such as was found deficient in weight. He 
had many other as arduous duties to perform. 

Until the year 1746, it was the custom for mayors 
upon their retirement from office to give an enter- 
tainment to the gentlemen of the corporation. In 
that year the retiring mayor, James Hamilton, rep- 
resented to the board that he intended in lieu thereof 
to give a sum of money equal, at least, to the sums 
usually expended on such occasions, to be laid in 
something permanently useful to the city. His 
donation was one hundred and fifty pounds. This 
wise and liberal precedent was followed by most of 
the mayors who succeeded him. 

In 1747, William Attwood, retiring mayor, repre- 
sented to the board that " the time of election of a 
mayor for the ensuing year is at hand, and of late 
years it has been a difficulty to find persons willing 
to serve in that office, by reason of the great trouble 
which attends the faithful execution of it." Upon his 
motion it was ordered that one hundred pounds per 
annum should be paid to the mayor, out of the cor- 
poration stock, for three years to come. 


The city had its beadle, constables, and public 
whipper. The beadle rang the bell and made proc- 
lamation of the ordinances. The constables, in addi- 
tion to their customary offices, superintended for a long 
time the duties of watchmen. In 1713, William Hill, 
the city beadle, getting dissatisfied for some cause 
not put on record, broke his bell in a fit-of passion, 
and swore that he would no longer serve. When he 

became cooler (sober?), however, he repented his 
folly and expressed deep sorrow, pledging himself to 
future good behavior. The good aldermen forgave 
him his offense, and continued him in office. Who 
paid for the cracked bell is not on record. 

The name of one of Philadelphia's public whippers 
has been handed down to posterity. It was Daniel 
Pettitoe, who exercised his calling in 1753. 

Taverns there were, in which a good deal of hard 
drinking was done in the Old England fashion, and 
brawls were frequent in consequence. The watch 
carried lanterns on their rounds, for there were no 
street lamps in those days. The young gallants were 
wont to go walking round on moonlit nights, stop- 
ping now and then to chat with the fair ones sitting 
on the porches (flirting would be the word nowadays), 
and as they could not do this on dark nights, they 
went by the name of lunarians. 

This " porch amusement" was, of course, enjoyable 
only in the summer. In winter the company was re- 
ceived in the sitting-room, which might as well be 
styled the living-room, for the many purposes it 
served. They dined in it, and sometimes slept in it. 
The high-backed settee which graced one of its 
corners revealed a bed when the top was turned 
down, — a somewhat rough invention from which our 
modern sofa-bedstead has descended. The furniture 
and general arrangement of the room was of the 
simplest kind ; settees with stiff high backs, one or 
two large tables of pine or of maple, a high, deep chest 
of drawers containing the wearing apparel of the 
family, and a corner cupboard in which the plate and 
china were displayed, constituted a very satisfactory 
set of parlor furniture in the early part of the eigh- 
teenth century, — sofas and sideboards were not yet in 
use, nor were carpets. The floor was sanded, the 
walls whitewashed, and the wide mantel of the open 
fireplace was of wood. The windows admitted light 
through small panes set in leaden frames. A few 
small pictures painted on glass, and a looking-glass 
with a small carved border, adorned the walls. 

Wealthier people had damask-covered couches in- 
stead of settees, and their furniture was of oak or 
mahogany, but in the same plain, stiff style. They 
used china cups and saucers, delf-ware from England, 
and massive silver waiters, bowls, and tankards. 
Plated ware was unknown, and those who could not 
afford the " real article" were content to use pewter 
plates and dishes. Not a few ate from wooden trench- 
ers. Lamps were scarcely known. Dipped candles 
in brass candlesticks gave sufficient light at night. 

Carpets were introduced about the middle of the 
eighteenth century, and their use, for some time, was 
far from general. They were made to cover the cen- 
tre of the floor, the chairs and tables not resting on, 
but around it. Paper-hangings came in a little earlier, 
and, in 1769, we see that Plunket Fleeson first manu- 
factured paper-hangings and papier-machi mouldings 
at the corner of Fourth and Chestnut Streets. 



Mr. Watson, in his " Annals," gives an extract from 
a letter of Mrs. Benjamin Franklin, written in 1765, 
to her husband, then in Europe, which shows that 
house-furnishing had taken a wide stride, at least 
among the higher classes. The letter is a minute de- 
scription of their new house just then erected in 
Franklin Court. Here is the extract : " In the room 
down-stairs is the sideboard, which is very handsome 


and plain, with two tables made to suit it, and a dozen 
of chairs also. The chairs are plain horse-hair, and 
look as well as Paduasoy, and are admired by all. 
The little south room I have papered, as the walls 
were much soiled. In this room is a carpet I bought 
cheap for its goodness, and nearly new. The large car- 
pet is in the blue room. In the parlor is a Scotch car- 
pet, which has had much fault found with it. Your 
time-piece stands in one corner, which is, I am told, all 
wrong,-— but I say we shall have all these as they should 
be when you come home. If you could meet with a 
Turkey carpet I should like it ; but if not, I shall be 
very easy, for as to these things I have become quite 
indifferent at this time. In the north room, where we 
sit, we have a small Scotch carpet, the small book- 
case, brother John's picture, and one of the king and 
queen. In the room for our friends we have the Earl 
of Bute hung up, and a glass. May I desire you to 
remember drinking-glasses, and a large table-cloth or 
two ; also a pair of silver canisters. The closet-doors 
in your room have been framed for glasses, unknown 
to me; I shall send you an account of the panes re- 
quired. I shall also send the measures of the fire- 
places and the pier of glass. The chimneys do well, 
and I have baked in the oven, and found it is good. 
The room we call yours has in it a desk, — the har- 
monica made like a desk, — a large chest with all the 
writings, the boxes of glasses for music and for the 
electricity, and all your clothes. The pictures are not 
put up, as I do not like to drive nails, lest they should 
not be right. The blue room has the harmonica and 
the harpsicord, the gilt sconce, a card-table, a set of 

tea china, the worked chairs and screen, a very 
handsome stand for the tea-kettle to stand on, and the 
ornamental china. The paper of this room has lost 
much of its bloom by pasting up. The curtains are 
not yet made. The south room is my sleeping-room 
with my Susannah, where we have a bed without 
curtains, a chest of drawers, a table, a glass, and old 
walnut chairs, and some of our family pictures. I 
have taken all the dead letters [meaning those he had 
as Postmaster-General] and the papers that were in 
the garret, with the books not taken by Billy [his son, 
W. Franklin, at Burlington], and had them boxed 
and barreled up, and put in the south garret to await 
your return. Sally has the south room up two pair 
of stairs, having therein a bed, bureau, table, glass, 
and the picture, — a trunk and books, — but these you 
can't have any notion of!" 

Mrs. Franklin's house was furnished in better style 
than the primitive " sitting-room" we have described, 
but such improvements were not to be found every- 
where. The tastes of the people were simple, and it 
was a long time before they thought of luxury in 
their homeB. What did it matter? They enjoyed 
health, they wanted none of the necessaries of life ; 
food was abundant and wholesome, clothes did not 
change in style and color with every change of sea- 
son, their amusements were of the simplest kind. 
Those bare walls resounded with as much genuine 
merriment as the brilliant parlors of our day. True 



Motto, " Keep bright the chain." 

love-vows were whispered on that rustic porch or 
under the noble tree that sheltered the roof. The 
old people sitting in the chimney-corner planned 
and schemed as much as papas and mammas of mod- 
ern times do about their children's future. 

Hospitality and good feeling reigned. The large 
pine table often groaned under the weight of the 
viands spread out in welcome of some friendly guests. 



The punch-bowl was a fixture even in the Quaker's 
house, and it was not deemed a crime to enjoy a social 
glass. We may even admit that our old citizens 
were hard drinkers, which is far from meaning that 
they were drunkards. They were sensible enough to 
distinguish use from abuse, and temperance societies 
had not yet been invented. 

The dress of the early Philadelphians was neces- 
sarily simple, made of strong and coarse material 
that could resist the hard usage to which it was put. 
Men could not hew trees, build houses, and drive the 
plow in velvet coats and satin breeches, nor could their 
wives and daughters bake and scrub and sweep with 
their hair " frizzed, crisped, and tortured into wreaths 
and borders, and underpropped with forks, wires, etc.," 
and flounced and furbelowed gowns. Coarse cloth 
and deerskins for the men, linseys and worsted for 
the women, were of every-day use ; the " Sunday-go- 
to-meeting" clothes were carefully preserved in the 
huge chest of drawers that contained the family ap- 
parel. There was little difference between the dress 
of the Quakers and that of the remainder of the 
people. The former's adoption at a later date of a 
more formal costume of sober color was an effort to 
resist the extravagances of fashion, which had pene- 
trated into the far-distant colony, making its belles 
and beaux a distorted counterfeit of the beruffled and 
gilded courtiers of Queen Anne's or George I.'s 

But fashion is a mighty ruler, against which it is 
useless to rebel. The greatest men, thinkers, poets, 
philosophers, and soldiers have bowed to her decrees, 
and made themselves appear ridiculous to please 
"Monsieur Tout le Monde," as the Frenchman said. 
As for the dear ladies, whom they wish to please is a 
mystery, for have they not, from the oldest time to 
the present day, often accepted the most unbecoming 
styles of dress and coiffures, despite of the protest of 
their male admirers ? They must have a more laudable 
object than exciting admiration, and their apparent 
fickleness of taste conceals, perhaps, a charitable desire 
to comfort such of their sisters to whom nature has 
not vouchsafed perfect symmetry of form or feature. 
Some woman of high rank has very large feet, and to 
conceal them she wears a long dress ; immediately 
the prettiest little feet hide themselves; a lady of the 
British court had one of her beautiful shoulders dis- 
figured by a wart; she concealed the unpleasant 
blemish by means of a small patch of black sticking- 
plaster ; soon black patches were seen on every 
woman's shoulders ; thence they crept to the face, and 
were seen cut in most fantastic shapes on the chin, 
the cheeks, the forehead ; the tip of the nose was the 
only place respected. An infanta of Spain had the 
misfortuue of being born with one hip higher than 
the other ; to conceal this defect a garment symmetri- 
cally distended by wires was invented, and, forthwith 
all the ladies wore hoops. Louis XIV., of France, 
whose neck was not of the straightest, introduced the 

large wig, with curls descending half-way down the 
back and covering the shoulders ; the men, as a matter 
of course, adopted the cumbersome head-gear. The 
women were loath to conceal their shoulders, so, after 
a time, they found a means of making quite as ex- 
travagant a display of their hair : they built it up in 
an immense pyramid, so high at one time that a 
woman's face seemed to be placed in the middle of 
her body. A lady of diminutive stature finding that 
this upper structure was disproportionate to her size, 
had wooden heels, six inches high, adapted to her 
shoes ; all the women learned to walk on their toes, 
and the tall ones looked like giantesses. An old 
magazine publishes the doleful tale of a gentleman 
who, having married a well-proportioned lady, dis- 
covered, when she appeared in deshabille, that he was 
wedded to a dwarf. That old rake, the Duke de 
Richelieu, the fit companion of the dissolute Louis 
XV., having grown gray, was the first to use powder 
over his hoary locks, and for fifty years all Europe 
powdered the hair with flour or starch. Even the 
soldiers had to be in the fashion, and some curious 
economist once made the calculation that inasmuch 
as the military forces of England and the colonies 
were, including cavalry, infantry, militia, and fen- 
cibles, two hundred and fifty thousand, and each man 
used a pound of flour per week, the quantity con- 
sumed in this way was six thousand five hundred 
tons per annum ; capable of sustaining fifty thousand 
persons on bread, and producing three million fifty- 
nine thousand three hundred and fifty-three quartern 
loaves I 

As we have had occasion to remark, the fashions 
were slow in changing in Pennsylvania during the 
early part of the eighteenth century, and Addison 
could not have said of the ladies of Philadelphia as 
he did of the London belles, — " There is not so vari- 
able a thing in nature as a lady's head-dress. Within 
my own memory I have known it rise and fall above 
thirty degrees. About ten years ago it shot up to a 
very great height, insomuch that the female part of 
our species were much taller than the men. The 
women were of such enormous stature that we ap- 
peared as grasshoppers before them. At present the 
whole sex is in a manner diminished and sunk into 
a race of beauties that seems almost another species. 
I remember several ladies who were once very near 
seven feet high that at present want some inches of 
five. How they came to be thus curtailed I cannot 
learn. Whether the whole sex be at present under 
any penance which we know nothing of, or whether 
they have cast their head-dresses in order to surprise 
us with something of that kind which shall be en- 
tirely new ; or whether some of the tallest of the sex, 
being too cunning for the rest, have contrived the 
method to make themselves sizable, is still a secret, 
though I find most are of opinion they are at present 
like trees, new lopped and pruned, that will certainly 
sprout up and flourish with greater heads than be- 



fore." This was before the time of powdered heads ; 
when this fashion did come, the ladies' head-dresses 
rose to a greater height than before. 

Let us picture a fashionable couple walking in the 
streets of Philadelphia in 1712. The lady trips 
lightly on her dainty little feet cased in satin slip- 
pers. Her flounced silk petticoat is so distended by 
the recently-introduced hoops that it is a mystery 
how she can pass through an ordinary-sized doorway; 
her tightly-laced stomacher is richly ornamented 
with gold braid ; the sleeves are short, but edged with 
wide point-lace, which falls in graceful folds near to 
the slender wrists. Her hair, no longer propped up 
by wires and cushions, drops in natural curls upon 
her neck. A light silk hood of the then fashionable 
cherry color protects her head. The useful parasol 
was not yet known, but she carries a pretty fan, which, 
when folded, is round like a marshal's baton. 

The gentleman walks by her side, but is precluded 
from offering her the support of his arm by the am- 
plitude of her skirts, and of his own as well, for his 
square-cut coat of lavender silk is stiffened out at the 
skirts with wire and buckram ; it is opened so as to 
show the long-flapped waistcoat with wide pockets 
wherein to carry the snuff-box and the bonbonniere. 
The sleeves are short with large rounded cuffs ; his 
gold-fringed gloves are hidden in his good-sized muff. 
A point-lace cravat protects his neck, and over his tie- 
wig he wears a dainty little cocked hat trimmed with 
gold lace. His feet are encased in square-toed shoes 
with small silver buckles. His partridge-silk stock- 
ings reach above the knee, where they meet his 
light-blue silk breeches. 

At a respectful distance behind come the gentle- 
man's valet and the lady's maid. He wears a black 
hat, a brown-colored coat, a striped waistcoat with 
brass buttons, leather breeches, and worsted stock- 
ings, stout shoes with brass buckles. The abigail's 
dress is of huckaback, made short, the skirts not so 
distended as those of her mistress, yet are puffed out 
in humble imitation of the fashion. A bright apron 
and silk neckerchief and a neat cap give a touch of 
smartness to the plain costume. 

Here come a worthy tradesman and his buxom 
wife. His coat, of stout gray cloth, is trimmed with 
black. His gray waistcoat half conceals his service- 
able leather breeches ; worsted stockings and leather 
shoes protect his legs and feet. The good dame by 
his side has put on her chintz dress, and though the 
material is not as costly as that worn by the fine lady 
before her, it is made up in the fashionable style, and 
the indispensable hoops add to the natural rotundity 
of the wearer. A peculiarity in her costume is the 
check apron that spreads down from her stomacher, 
concealing the bright petticoat. 

This simplicity of apparel was the rule, the costly 
style previously described the exception. Very or- 
dinary material was still used among our citizens, and 
articles of clothing were considered so valuable as to 

be in many instances special objects of bequest. 
Henry Furhis, who died in 1701, bequeathed to one 
of his daughters his leather coat, leather waistcoat, 
his black hat and cap. To another daughter he left 
his blue waistcoat, leather breeches, and muslin 
neck-cloth ; and to another daughter a new drugget 

Gunner Swanson, the Swede, who died in 1702, be- 
queathed " deer-skins dressed" and " not dressed." 
John Budd in 1704 devised his " beaver hat" to his 
brother. Peter Baynton in 1710 made special de- 
vises of a remnant of plush, two and a half yards, 
plate buttons suitable for breeches, his best hat, " a 
frieze coat without buttons on or to be put on it," 
one large waistcoat without buttons, and woolen hose. 
A runaway servant is advertised as having worn at 
the time of his departure a green silk handkerchief 
about his neck, a broad-brimmed hat, a brown-colored 
coat, mixed kersey jacket with horn buttons, leather 
breeches, and worsted stockings. 

This disregard for the behests of fashion could not 
last, however. The Friends were alarmed. Although 
in the early days they had not been averse to bright 
colors, they advocated a still greater simplicity in ap- 
parel and customs when they saw the fashionable 
follies of Europe penetrating into the quiet colony. 
It was too late, however, to stem the current. They 
had lost much of their influence ; new social elements 
had given a character to the community, and all 
they could do was to endeavor to protect the young 
people of their sect from the contamination of these 
worldly ways, so much at variance with their own 
ideas and principles. 

In 1726 the following testimony was borne against 
female vanities by women who were not vain : 

"From Woman Ffriends at the Yearly Meeting held at Burlington the 
21st of the Seventh month, 1726, to Woman Ffrienda at the several 
Quarterly and Monthly Meetings belonging to the same, 
" Greeting : 

" Dear and well-beloved Sisters: A weighty concern coming upon many 
ffaithful ffriends at this meeting in relation to divers undue liberties 
that are too frequently taken by some that walk among us and are ac- 
counted of us, we are willing, in the pure love of Truth which hath 
mercifully visited our souls, tenderly to caution and advise our ffriends 
against those things which we think inconsistent with our ancient 
Christian testimony of plainness in apparel, &c, some of which we think 
proper to particularize. 

" As first, that immodest fashion of hooped petticoats, or the imita- 
tion of them, either by something put into their petticoats to make 
them set full, or wearing more than is necessary, or any other imitation 
whatsoever, which we take to be but a branch springing from the same 
corrupt root of pride. And also that none of our ffriends accustom them- 
selves to wear the gowns with superfluous folds behind, but plain and 
decent ; nor go without aprons ; nor to wear superfluous gathers or 
plaits in their caps or pinners; nor to wear their heads dressed high 
behind; neither to cut or lay their hair on their forehead or temples. 

"And that ffriends be careful to avoid wearing striped shoes, or red 
or white heeled shoes or clogs; or shoes trimmed with gaudy colors. 

" Likewise that all ffrieuds be careful to avoid all superfluity of ffur- 
niture in their houses, and as much as may be to refrain using gaudy 
flowers or striped calicoes and stuffs. 

" And also that no ffriends use that irreverent practice of taking 
snuff, or handing suuff-boxes one to the other in meetings. 

"Also that ffriends avoid the unnecessary use of fans in -meetings, 
lest it divert the mind from the more inward and spiritual exercise 
which all ought to be concerned in. 



" And also that ffriends do not accustom themselves to go with barB 
breasts or bare necks. 

" There is likewise a tender concern upon our minds to recommend 
unto all ffriends the constant use of the plain language, &c, being a 
branch of our ancient Christian testimony, for which many of our 
worthy Elders underwent deep sufferings in their day, as they likewise 
did because they could not give the common salutations by bowing and 
cringing of the body, which wa earnestly desire ffriends may be careful 
to avoid. 

"And we further tenderly advise and exhort that all ffriends be care- 
ful to maintain love and unity, and to watch against whisperings and 
evil surmisings one against another; and to keep in humility, that 
nothing be done through strife or vain glory ; and that those who are 
concerned to take an oversight over the flock, do it not as lords over 
God's heritage, but as servants to the churches. 

" Dear Sisters, these things we solemnly recommend to your careful 
notice, in a degree of that divine love which hath graciously manifested 
itself for the redemption of a remnant from the vain conversation, cus- 
tom and ffashions that are in the world, that we might be unto the 
Lord a chosen generation, a royal prieBthood, an holy nation, a peculiar 
people, showing forth the praises of Him who hath called us out of 
darkness into his marvelous light. That we may all walk as children 
of the light and of the day is the earnest desire of our souls. 

" We conclude with the salutation of unfeigned love, your ffriends 
and sisters. 

" Signed on behalf and by order of the said meeting, by 

"Hannah Hill." 

The Quakers had partially laid aside the wig, but 
the day had not come when men were to see the 
absurdity of wearing other men's hair instead of their 
own. Light hair for periwigs is advertised by Oliver 
Galtry, periwig-maker, in High Street, near the 
market, in 1722; and George Sheed, periwig-maker, 
in Front Street, advertises in 1726 that he buys all 
sorts of light and gray hair. A murderer who escaped 
from New York is advertised as having worn a bob- 
wig, a sad-colored stuff coat trimmed with silver, and 
a flowered silk waistcoat and breeches. 

The wigs held their own until after the return of 
Braddock's broken army. The hair was then allowed 
to grow, and was either plaited or clubbed behind, or 
it was worn in a black silk bag, adorned with a large 
black rose. From this it dwindled down to the queer 
little " pigtail," which, not many years past, could be 
seen bobbing up and down on the high coat-collar of 
some old gentlemen of the last generation. 

Stiff high-back chairs and settees, a stiff style of 
dress, — for the hooped petticoat and wired coat-skirt 
carry with them no idea of graceful ease, — must have 
given the manners a tendency to stiffness. The stately 
minuet was, very appropriately, the fashionable dance 
of the day, at least among what was called " the 
politer classes ;" the " common people," that is, the 
great social body not comprised in that upper-tendom, 
did not follow the fashions so closely, and enjoyed 
merrier dances, the favorite among which was " hip- 

Notwithstanding those distinctions of classes which 
sound oddly to our republican ears when we forget 
that the Philadelphia of which we speak was not a 
republican city, every tradition attests the fact that 
the most cordial relations existed between those 
classes. William Fishbourne, in his manuscript nar- 
rative, says, " For many years there subsisted a 
good concord and benevolent disposition among the 

people of all denominations, each delighting to be 
reciprocally helpful and kind in acts of friendship 
for one another." Mr. Watson, writing in 1842, says 
he has often heard aged persons say that decent citi- 
zens had a universal speaking acquaintance with each 
other, and everybody promptly recognized a stranger 
in the streets. The hospitality of the early settlers 
was proverbial, and Mr. Kalm, who was here in 1748, 
expressed his surprise " at the universal freedom with 
which travelers were everywhere accustomed to leap 
over the hedges and take the fruit from the orchards, 
even while the owners were looking on, without 

It is evident that the social prejudices of Old Eng- 
land had been considerably softened by the necessities 
of colonial life. Mutual helpfulness was natural and 
unavoidable when none could feel perfectly indepen- 
dent of the others ; besides, the great majority of the 
early settlers were Quakers, or, as their other name 
implies, friends, the simplicity of whose religion did 
not admit of differences of rank and birth, or, at least, 
with whom these differences could not affect social re- 
lations. Yet these prejudices did exist, although the 
hereditary gentlemen were not domineering as in 
England, nor were the tradesmen cringing and sub- 
missive. In a new country every one must neecls 
contribute to the common prosperity ; labor is always 
honorable, and the honest laborer feels that he is as 
good as any other man. But while they possessed 
the dignity of manhood, the tradesmen of olden 
times were not ashamed of their calling ; they did 
not try to ape the manners or copy the dress of their 
employers, or, as the Englishman would say, of their 
betters. They had no foolish pride ; they formed a 
class of society, a useful class; they were content with 
the knowledge of their own worth, and did not care 
what imaginary barriers separated them from other 
classes. They went about their daily work as carpen- 
ters, masons, blacksmiths, etc., clad in garments suited 
to their occupations, — strong buckskin breeches, 
check shirts, and flannel jackets, generally protected 
by the large leather apron from their breasts to below 
their knees. Their wives and children wore plain 
clothes; their homes were simple and comfortable, 
and saw as much mirth and genuine happiness as the 
homes of the wealthy. They were free from that bane 
of the modern poor man's home, — the desire for show, 
the craving for outward appearances of prosperity be- 
yond their reach. It is such men, the bone and sinew 
of the country, together with the hardy tillers of the 
soil, who have fought her battles, secured her liberty, 
and founded her prosperity. 

Tradition does not mention the antagonism between 
labor and capital, — the cloud that darkens the horizon 
of the republic in our day. It is true that in that 
golden age capital was not selfish, labor was not 

The tradesmen of Philadelphia, with a view to 
check any attempt to encroach upon their rights by 



those who claimed a superiority of rank, had formed 
a union under the name of " The Leather Apron 
Club." In 1728, Benjamin Franklin, then a young 
printer, twenty-two years of age, gave that name to 
an association which he and ten others formed for the 
purpose of mutual improvement. They attempted to 
establish a library of their own, and to this attempt, 
which partially failed as originally conceived, grew 
that most admirable of Philadelphia institutions, the 
library. The very interesting history of the Phila- 
delphia Library being given in another chapter of 
this work, we have merely mentioned it to note the 
fact that, with one or two exceptions, the founders of 
Franklin's Leather Apron Club were tradesmen, and 
that all rose to distinction, several occupying places 
of honor and trust in the service of their country. 

There were few hired servants in those days ; menial 
labor was done by black slaves and German and Irish 
redemptioners. Slavery was not repugnant to our 
forefathers' notions of justice; it was admitted even 
by the Quakers. But the slaves of Philadelphia were 
happy; harsh treatment was not countenanced by 
public opinion. Servants were regarded as forming 
an integral part of the family, and proper attention 
paid to their comforts. 

Peter Kalm, the Swedish traveler, already quoted, 
who came to Philadelphia in 1748, seems to have 
. thoroughly investigated the question of servants. 
He says that there were two classes of white ser- 
vants : the first were quite free to serve by the year. 
They could even leave their masters before the expi- 
ration of the twelve months ; but in that case they 
were in danger of losing their wages. A man-ser- 
vant, having some abilities, got between sixteen and 
twenty pounds in Pennsylvania currency. This was 
in Philadelphia ; the wages were not so good in the 
country. A maid-servant received eight or ten pounds 
a year. These servants had to buy their own clothes. 
The second class consisted of such persons as came 
annually from Germany, England, and other coun- 
tries for the purpose of settling in the colony. Some 
were flying from oppression, others from religious 
persecution, but most of them were too poor to pay 
the six or eight pounds sterling required for their 
passage. They agreed with the captain that they 
would suffer themselves to be sold for a few years on 
their arrival. Very old people made arrangements 
to sell their children, in order to secure their own 
passage. Some could pay part of the passage-money, 
and were sold only for a short time. Some of the Ger- 
mans, although having the means to pay their way, pre- 
ferred to suffer themselves to be sold with a view that 
during their servitude they might gain some knowl- 
edge of the language of the country and have time 
to decide what pursuits would be most advantageous. 
The average price of these servants was fourteen 
pounds for four years' servitude. The master was 
bound to feed and clothe his servant, and to present 
him with a new suit of clothes at the end of his term 

of servitude. The English and Irish commonly sold 
themselves for four years, but the Germans frequently 
agreed with the captain to pay him a certain sum of 
money for a certain number of persons, and, on their 
arrival in America, they tried to get a man to pay 
their passage for them, giving him in return one or 
several of their children to serve for a certain num- 
ber of years. If the demand was brisk, they were 
thus able to make their bargain with the highest 

The purchase of black slaves involved too great an 
outlay of capital to be as general as that of white 
servants, and they were not held in large number by 
any one master. 

The amusements of the young people of Philadel- 
phia were, for many years, of the simplest and most 
innocent kind. Riding, swimming, and skating af- 
forded pleasant out-door sport. " Going to meeting," 
although it may not be classed as an amusement, was 
certainly a pious recreation for the young Quakers 
and Quakeresses. It interrupted the monotony and 
seclusion of the domestic circle. The immigration 
of more worldly persons, in sufficient numbers to 
counterbalance the influence of the Friends, intro- 
duced hitherto unheard-of gayeties among them. 

Yearly Meeting, in 1716, advised Friends against 
" going to or being in any way concerned in plays, 
games, lotteries, music, and dancing." In 1719 ad- 
vice was given " that such be dealt with as run races, 
either on horseback or on foot, laying wagers, or use 
any gaming or needless and vain sports and pastimes, 
for our time passeth swiftly away, and our pleasure 
and delight ought to be in the law of the Lord." 

In 1722 was advertised the exhibition of " the Czar 
of Muscovia's country-seat, with its gardens, walks, 
fountains, fish-ponds, and fish that swim." It was to 
be seen at the house of Oliver Galtery, the periwig- 
maker, in Market Street, near the court-house. In 
1724 the first rope-dancer that astonished the young 
town held forth upon Society Hill, and made his an- 
nouncement as follows : 

" By permission of his Excellency Sir William Keith, Bart., Governor 
of the province of Pennsylvania, this is to give notice to all gentlemen 
and ladies and others, that there is newly arrived to this place the famous 
performance of roap-dancing, which is performed to the admiration of 
all beholders. 

"1st. By a little boy of seven years old, who dances and cspers upon 
the strait roap, to the wonder of all spectators. 

" 2d. By a woman who dances a corant and jigg upon the roape, which 
she performs as well as any dancing-master does upon the ground. 

" 3d. She danceB with baskets upon her feet and iron fetters upon her 

" 4th. She walks upon the roap with a wheelbarrow before her. 

" 5th. Tou will see various performances on the slack roap. 

" 6thly. Tou are entertained with the comical humour of your old 
friend, Pickle Herring. 

"The whole concluding with a woman turning round with a Bwift 
motion, with seven or eight swords' points at her eyes, mouth, and breBt, 
for a quarter of an hour together, to the admiration of all that behold 
the performance. 

" There will also be several other diverting performances on the stage, 
too large here to mention. 

" The above performances to he seen at the new booth on Society Hill, 



to begin on Thursday next and last the term of twenty days, and no 

" The price on the stage, 3s.; in the pit, 2s.; in gallery, Is. 6d. 

"To begin exactly at 7 o'clock in the evening." 

In 1726, Matthew Garrigues, at the sign of Prince 
Eugene, in Second Street, advertised for sale " a new 
hilliard-tahle," certainly the first of which we have 
any account in the province. 

Small shows now, from time to time, made their 
appearance. In 1727, " The Lion, King of Beasts," 
was advertised to be exhibited in Water Street. Ad- 
mission for each person, one shilling. In April, 1737, 
there was exhibited at the Indian King Tavern, on 
Market Street, a cat having one head, eight legs, two 
tails, and from the breast down two bodies. This 
monstrous production was considered a curiosity 
worthy of special attention. In 1739 there was ex- 
hibited at Clark's Tavern, sign of the Coach and 
Horses, Chestnut Street, between Fifth and Sixth, a 
mechanical contrivance of moving figures, represent- 
ing Joseph's Dream, Joseph in Egypt, etc. In 1744, 
something of the same kind, but more fanciful in the 
performances of the various figures shown, the whole 
moving by clock-work, was exhibited at the Crooked 
Billet Tavern, on King [Water] Street. In the same 
year there was exhibited at the Indian King, in Mar- 
ket Street, " a beautiful creature, hut surprising fierce, 
called a leopard.'' In the same year the following 
advertisement appeared : 

" To be seen at the house of John Saunders, huntsman, the upper part 
of Second Street, a strange and surprising creature called a mouse 
[moose], about the bigness of a horse. It has a face like a mouse, ears 
like an asB, neck and back like a camel, hind parte like a horse, tail like 
a rabbit, and feet like a heifer. It was lately brought to town, and 
came four hundred miles, and is so line limbed that it can jump six feet 
high. Price to men, sixpence, and threepence to children. " 

In 1740 the camel was exhibited. In 1742 there 
was a magic-lantern exhibition ; in 1745 a camera- 
obscura ; in 1749, som« curious shell-work and a 
philosophical machine. 

But these shows were harmless amusements; a 
greater shock was given to Quaker propriety on the 
31st of August, 1738, when the following advertise- 
ment appeared in the Pennsylvania Mercury : 

" This is to give notice that Theobald Hackett, dancing-master (lately 
come from England and Ireland), haB opened a dancing-school in this 
city, at the house wherein Mr. Erownell lately lived, in Second Street, 
where he will give due attendance and teach all sorts of fashionable 
English and French dances, after the newest and politest manner prac- 
ticed in London, Dublin, and Paris, and will give all young ladies, gen- 
tlemen, and children (that please to learn of him) the most graceful 
carriage in dancing, and genteel behavior in company, that can possibly 
be given by any dancing-master whatever." 

Whether as a consequence of a visit of this Terpsi- 
chorean professor to the city, or from the increase of 
persons who understood dancing, it cannot now be 
known, but it is certain that as early as 1740 a dan- 
cing assembly was formed in the city, and also an as- 
sociation for musical purposes. They had a room for 
the holding of parties and balls. This appears from 
the account of the conduct of Mr. Seward, the friend 
and companion of Whitefield, who attempted to close 

that saloon during the preaching of the latter. In 
1748 the members of the dancing assembly were as 
follows: Alexander Hamilton, Thomas Lawrence, 
Jr., John Wallace, Phineas Bond, Charles Willing, 
Joseph Shippen, Samuel McCall, Jr., George McCall, 
Edward Jones, Samuel McCall, Sr., Redmond Con- 
yngham, Joseph Sims, Thomas Lawrence, Sr., David 
Mcllvaine, John Wilcocks, Charles Stedman, John 
Kid, William Bingham, Buckridge Sims, James 
Hamilton, Ro. Mackinet, William Allen, Archibald 
McCall, Joseph Turner, Thomas Hopkinson, Richard 
Peters, John Swift, John Kearsley, William Plumsted, 
Andrew Elliot, James Burd, Adam Thompson, Alex- 
ander Stedman, Patrick Baird, John Sober, David 
Franks, John Inglis, Ninian Wiseheart, Abram Tay- 
lor, James Trotter, Samson Levy, Lynford Lardner, 
Bichard Hill, Jr., Benjamin Price, John Francis, 
William Mcllvaine, William Humphreys, William 
Peters, James Polyceen, William Franklin, Henry 
Harrison, John Hewston, David Boiles, Thomas 
White, John Lawrence, Thomas Graeme, John Cot- 
tenham, John Moland, and William Cozzens. 

In this year the dancing assembly was under the 
direction of John Inglis, Lynford Lardner, John 
Wallace, and John Swift. The subscription was 
forty shillings. 

Gentlemanly accomplishments were looked after 
during this period. In 1742 there appeared this noti- 
fication : 

" These are to give notice to all gentlemen who desire to learn the 
true method and art of defense of the small-sword in its greatest perfec- 
tion, and extraordinarily quick and speedy, with all the guards, parades, 
thrusts, and lessons thereunto belonging fully described, and also the 
best rule for playing against artists or others with blunts or sharps, that 
they may be taught the same by me, Bichard Kyenall, professor and 
master of the said art, who is to be spoken with at Dr. Bichard Farmer's, 
in Second Street. 

" Note. — He teaches gentlemen either in private or public, by the month 
or the whole." 

In 1746 one Kennet advertised to teach the arts and 
accomplishments of dancing and the use of the small- 

This notice elicited, in a succeeding newspaper, an 
indignant article, signed by Samuel Foulk, in which 
he said, " I was surprised at his audacity and brazen 
impudence in giving those detestable vices those high 
encomiums. They be proved so far from accomplish- 
ments that they are diabolical." 

In 1749 the following advertisement appeared in 
the public journals: 

"John Beals, music-master, from London, at his house in Fourth 
Street, near to Chestnut, joining to Mr. Linton, collar-maker, teacheB 
the violin, hautboy, German flute, common flute, and dulcimer, by note. 
Mr. Beales likewise attends young ladies or others that may desire it at 
their houses. He likewise produces music for halls or other entertain- 

All this might be borne, but in the same year, 1749, 
an event happened which was well calculated to fill 
with alarm and sorrow the bosoms of the worthy 
Friends. A theatrical company made its first appear- 
ance in Philadelphia. In John Smith's manuscript 



journal is given the following entry, under date of 
Sixth month (August) 22, 1749 : 

" Joseph MorriB and I happened in at Peacock Bigger'sand drank tea 
there,' and hie daughter being one of the company who were going to 
hear the tragedy of * Cato' acted, it occasioned some conversation, in 
which I expressed my sorrow that anything of the kind was encour- 

Where this company performed is not known. It 
might have been at the store-house in Water Street 
near Pine, afterward occupied by Hallam's company, 
to whom the introduction of the drama in this coun- 
try, in 1752, has been erroneously assigned. That 
these comedians must have lingered here several 
months is shown by the following representation, 
made to the Common Council on the 8th of January, 
1750 : 

" The Recorder reported that certain persons had lately taken upon 
them to act plays in this city, and, as he was informed, intended to make 
a frequent practice thereof, which, it was to be feared, would be attended 
with very mischievous effects, such as the encouragement of idleness 
and drawing great sums of money from weak and inconsiderate persons, 
who are apt to be fond of such kind of entertainment, though the per- 
formance be ever so mean and contemptible. Whereupon the Board 
unanimously requested the magistrates to take the most effectual meas- 
ures for suppressing this disorder, by sending for the actors and binding 
them to their good behavior, or by such other means as they should think 

Possibly the action of the magistrates produced 
the flight of these sons of Thespis from the city. The 
New York Gazette of the 26th of February, 1750, con- 
tains the following : 

"Last week arrived here a company of comedians from Philadelphia, 
who we bear have taken a convenient room for their purpose in one of 
the buildings lately belonging to the Hon. Rip Van Dam, Esq., deceased, 
in Nassau Street, where they intend to perform as long as the season 
lasts, provided they meet with suitable encouragement." 

This company was under the management of 

Murray and Thomas Kean. They remained in New 
York over a year, and the casts of the plays performed 
by them during that period were published in the 
New York papers. 

Society in 1750 was certainly more lively than in 
the earlier part of the century. Dancing was freely 
indulged in, although not countenanced by the 
Friends. Entertainments were frequently given, at 
which conviviality sometimes exceeded the bounds. 
The use of strong drinks, justifiable in the case of the 
first settlers as intended to counteract the effect of 
exposure to the inclemencies of the seasons and hard 
out-door work, had become widespread, and habitual 
intoxication was not uncommon. It became necessary 
to check this fatal practice ; but it was no easy matter 
to impress upon the people the evil consequences of a 
long-contracted habit that had become hurtful only 
because it had been carried to excess. Friends, with 
their usual thoughtfulness, were the first to move in 
this matter. They did so cautiously, yet denouncing 
the evil and adopting repressive measures so far as 
the members of their own society were concerned. 
In 1726 Yearly Meeting adopted strong resolutions 
against the practice of giving liquor to persons pres- 

ent at public vendue, which bad the effect of exciting 
bidders and creating an incautious rivalry between 
them, thereby stimulating them to offer much higher 
prices than the goods were worth. The Yearly Meet- 
ing determined that members of their profession who 
indulged in this practice should be dealt with. In 
1743 a petition was sent to the Assembly from Chester 
County complaining of this same practice of giving 
liquor at public vendue, — 

" the excessive drinking of which frequently produced swearing, quar- 
reling, and other scandaloue enormities, and, moreover, was often the 
cause that poor people gave extravagant prices for unnecessary things, 
whereby families were much oppressed, and sometimes ruined." 

In 1736 Yearly Meeting repeated its advice against 
the frequent use of drams, or other strong drink, in 
families or elsewhere, and particularly to be cautious 
of giving them to children, and thereby accustoming 
them to the habit of drinking such strong liquors. In 
1738 it was resolved to caution Friends against the 
" too frequent use of strong liquors." This advice was 
repeated in 1749 and 1750. In the Pennsylvania Ga- 
zette of 1733 are some remarks upon dram-drinking, 
caused by the fact that a woman had been found dead 
from the use of liquor. 

These remarks of the Gazette give us a correct no- 
tion of what sort of a breakfast the good dames used 
to eat, and describe the consequences of tippling in 
a most graphic manner. Says the Gazette, — 

" It iB now become the practice of some otherwise discreet women, 
instead of a draught of beer and toast, or a chunk of bread and cheese, 
or a wooden noggin of good porridge and bread, as our good old English 
custom is, or milk and bread boiled, or tea and bread and butter, or milk, 
or milk coffee, &c, they must have their two or three drams in the morn- 
ing, by which, as I believe, their appetite for wholesome food is taken 
away, and their minds stupefied, bo that they have no longer that pru- 
dent care for their family to manage well the business of their station, 
nor that regard for reputation which good women ought to have. And 
though they find thBir husbands' affairs every day going backward, 
through their negligence, and themselves wan t necessaries ; though there 
be no bread in the house, and the children almost barefoot this cold 
weather, yet, as if drinking mm were part of their religious worship, 
they never fail their constant daily sacrifice." 

This was a sad state of society, and the wonder is 
how the Philadelphians ever succeeded in shaking 
off the incubus of drink. They were in a fair way of 
becoming a community of sots. 

In 1729 the Weekly Mercury said that on the 1st, 
2d, and 3d nights of October, in the previous year, — 
that being about election time, — there was drank and 
thrown away, in and about the city, four thousand 
five hundred gallons of common beer. 

Drunkenness was attacted and defended in verse, 
the following having been published March 21, 1734 : 

" This town would quickly be reclaimed 
If drams no more had veut, 
And all the sorts that could be named 
To Strombolo were sent. 

" If none did tiff or Sampson mix, 
And punch were quite rejected, 
And all the rum thrown into Styx, 
The work would be perfected. 



E. W." 

" For brewers' skill is mostly such, 
Their art is so divine, 
Scarce any one would drink too much, 
Except a goat or swine. 

" Yours, 

A reply, March 28, 1734, was as follows : 

" ThiB town would quickly be reclaimed 
If every mau was wise, 
Or (be a lesser number named) 
The persons who advise. 

" To tell of Strombolo and Styx, 
But not the way to either, 
We still shall tiff and Sampson mix — 
Brums, punch, and rum together. 

" Pray, since the brewers' art divine, 
And beer so much surpasses, 
Bid them a faithful skill to join, 
And to reject molasses. 

"W. E." 

Edward Shipper*, in a letter written to his son Ed- 
ward, afterward chief justice, gives a feeling picture 
of the habits of the young men of that period. After 
noting particularly the fact that himself and his son 
Joseph did their work at Lancaster " without tasting 
a drop of strong liquor, confining their drinking in 
the evening to a little wine after eating a light sup- 
per,'' and recommending this practice most affec- 
tionately to Edward, he goes on to say, — 

" It is too common a thing for young men, when they first appear 
upon the stage of action, to aim at grandeur and politeness. They de- 
light to see their friends (often falsely so called) frequently at their 
houses, and to entertain them in a genteel manner. The friends are 
pleased with this, and bring other acquaintances with them to dine, etc. 
Then, afterwards, they sit at table two or three hours tippling of wine 
and punch, which, rendering the company unfit for any business, awalk 
to the Bowling Green or billiard-table is proposed and consented to ; and 
on their return from thence in the evening, instead of being calm and 
cool, and having the pleasure of reflecting upon a well-spent day, either 
for the advantage of their family or of both, they are become so stupid 
that tbey don't know what to do with themselves, but either go to a 
tavern or to one or other of their houses to drink away care till the clock 
strikes twelve ; and then, being quite devils and quite beasts, they stag- 
ger away home to snore and groan by the sides of their innocent young 
wives, who deserve ten thousand better things at their hands, and all 
this after the poor young things have been moping at home and bemoan- 
ing themselves of their hard fate, and crying out one hundred times in 
an evening, ' Well, if these be the pleasures of matrimony, would to 
heaven that we had remained under our parents' roof!' But, to return, 
when they have wallowed in their beds until about eleven o'clock next 
morning, they then raise their unclean bodies in order to act the same 
part over again . Can any rational creature excuse such behavior to God, 
to his wife and family, or even to himself?" 

There were already many taverns in those days, — 
not such coffee- and chocolate-houses as they had in 
London, where the most famous literary and political 
clubs held their meetings, and which were frequented 
by fashionable men, who sought the society of the 
wits, — such places as the " Chapter Coffee-House," 
where Dr. Buchan, Sir Eichard Phillips, Alexander 
Chalmers, Dr. Busby, and other celebrities met, or 
the immortal " Button's Coffee-House," the head- 
quarters of the Spectator's Club, where Addison, 
Steele, Pope, Ambrose Phillips, and others could be 
found enjoying social converse, and criticising the 

vices and follies of their time. Philadelphia could 
not yet boast of such places of resort, although it 
had long possessed establishments yclept " coffee- 
houses," a name that indicated a claim of superiority 
over the taverns, but whose frequenters called oftener 
for liquors, malt and spirituous, than for the fragrant 
Arabian berry or the nutritious bean of the cocoa- 

The old taverns of Philadelphia were certainly not 
all objectionable; many were quiet, respectable houses, 
where people arriving in the city might obtain re- 
freshments, or a citizen might enter to have a social 
glass and chat with an acquaintance ; but many, too 
many, perhaps, were bacchanalian resorts, frequented 
by dissipated young bloods and, often, by very bad 
characters. It is not to be wondered at that the 
practice of hard drinking prevailed to such an ex- 
tent, and if we have dwelt at some length on this 
subject it is not that the vice was peculiar to this 
community ; far from such being the case, it is a 
matter of congratulation that our forefathers should 
have succeeded in resisting and finally eradicating a 
practice which was generally accepted in England at 
the time. Drunkenness and profligacy of the worst 
kind prevailed in the higher ranks of society in the 
old country; the former was checked before it had 
destroyed the manhood of the colonists, the importa- 
tion of the latter was a failure, if ever attempted, and 
though our grandmothers may have imitated the ex- 
travagance in dress of the court ladies, they never 
imitated their morals. 

Weddings were occasions for feasting and frivolity, 
and the drinking on such occasions was often ex- 
cessive. The practice was discountenanced by prudent 
parents and by Friends generally. Thomas Chalkley, 
in his journal for 1725, notes the fact that he went 
home after attending a marriage at Horsham, at which 
Governor Keith was present, without going to the 
marriage dinner, " being sensible that great companies 
and preparations at weddings were growing incon- 
veniences among us, which I was conscientiously 
concerned to discourage." 

As early as 1716, the Yearly Meeting had advised 
that Friends every where avoid all extraordinary pro- 
visions at their marriages; and also, "as much as 
may be, avoid inviting those who are not Friends or that 
will not be under our discipline." In 1720, Yearly Meet- 
ing scented a new danger : with an increasing popu- 
lation representing a diversity of creeds, the social 
circle had become very much mixed; the Friends 
could not hold themselves aloof from the rest of the 
people, however much they might differ on religious 
questions ; now, many a pretty Quaker girl had won 
the heart of some gay gentleman, and a sober-minded 
young Friend was not always proof against the 
blandishments of some worldly beauty. The meeting 
solemnly advised against marriages between Friends 
and such as were not of that persuasion. That patri- 
archal body furthermore recommended that all con- 



cerned " take care, at the houses or places where they 
go to or are at, after the meeting is over, that no re- 
proach arise or occasion be given by any intemperate 
or immoderate feasting or drinking, or by any un- 
seemly, wanton discourse or actions, but that all 
behave with such modesty and propriety as becomes 
a people fearing God." 

A great abuse and evil of the burial customs at this 
time was in feasting, eating, and drinking among the 
persons attending on these occasions. This custom 
prevailed in England. When a person of high rank 
died the body was kept for several days " lying in 
state" for the public and their neighbors to come and 
look at it, and also to give time for the relatives who 
lived at a great distance to make the journey and be 
present at the funeral. These visitors had to be en- 
tertained, and in course of time what had been a 
matter of necessity became a general custom, and 
there was an entertainment at every funeral, be the 
deceased ever so obscure. The Yearly Meeting ad- 
mitted that at some burials where people may come 
from a long distance there may be occasion for re- 
freshments, but recommended that these may be 
taken in moderation. Friends, when they attended 
the burials of those not in communion with them, 
were advised to keep themselves and their children 
from going with the dead into their worship houses. 
They were instructed by the Concord Monthly Meet- 
ing in 1729 to desist from such " idolatrous practices'' 
as putting names and dates upon coffins. 

The English practice of burying by torchlight, 
satirized by Pope as a vain ostentation in the lines, — 

" When Hopkins dies, a thousand lights attend 
The wretch, who, living, saved a candle's end," 

was never general in Philadelphia. A few such 
funerals, however, are on record. The interment 
took place in Christ Church. Robert Asheton, re- 
corder of the city, was buried in that way in 1727. 
In 1734, Lady Gordon also had the honors of a torch- 
light funeral. 

The order of march at funerals in Philadelphia 
was as follows : The parson walked before the bearers, 
and if the deceased was a woman the ladies walked 
in procession next to the mourners, and the gentle- 
men followed after them. But this order was reversed 
if the deceased was a man, and the gentlemen pre- 
ceded the ladies. 1 Samuel Keimer, in 1723, describes 
in elegiac verses the funeral of Aquila Rose, a printer, 
a poet, keeper of the ferry at High Street, Schuylkill, 
and clerk of the Assembly, a much lamented young 
man. The description is graphic, if not of the 
highest order of poetry : 

" His corpse attended was by friends so Boon — 
From seven at morn till one o'clock at noon ; 
By master-printers carried to his grave, 
Our city printer such an honor gave. 

1 This custom was not, as some writers believe, peculiar to Philadel- 
phia. It prevailed (and may still prevail) iu New Orleans, at least at the 
funeral of women, the ladies not attending the funerals of men. 

A worthy merchant did the widow lead, 

And then both mounted on a stately steed. 

Next preachers, common council, aldermen ; 

A judge and sheriff graced the solemn train ; 

Nor failed our treasurer iu respect to come, 

Nor stayed the keeper of the rolls at home. 

Our aged postmaster here now appears, 

Who had not walked so far for twice twelve years ; 

With merchants, shopkeepers, the young and old — 

A numerous throng, not very easy told. 

The keeper of the seat did on him wait: 

Thus was he carried, like a king — in state ; 

And, what still adds a further lustre to't, 

Some rode well mounted, others walked afoot. 2 

Church folks, dissenters, here with one accord, 

Their kind attendance readily afford. 

To show their love, each differing sect agree 

To grace his funeral with his company ; 

And what was yet more grateful, people cried. 

Beloved he lived, see bow beloved he died 1 

"When to the crowded meeting he was bore 
I wept so long till I could weep no more ; 
While beauteous Liqhtfoot did, like Noah's dove, 
Sweetly declare God's universal love, 
His words like balm (or drops of honey) laid 
To heal those wounds grief iu my heart had made. 
Three other preachers did their task fulfill, — 
The loving GhaWey and the lowly HM. 
The famous Langdale did the sermons end 
For this our highly honored, worthy friend." 

In 1748, " burial biscuit" is advertised for sale by a 
baker in the city, a proof that the feasting at funerals, 
so much inveighed against by Yearly Meeting, was 
as strong as ever, and even inspired the genius of 
speculation. To have " burial biscuits" to dip in 
their wine probably intensified the grief of the dear 
departed's friends. In fact, the chronicler in attempt- 
ing to describe the manners and customs of the early 
Philadelphians must be continually drawing the line 
of distinction between the Friends and the remainder 
of the community. The former had their peculiar 
views about everything, and these views were some- 
times greatly at variance with not only the accepted 
code of English society, but with the laws of the 
land. In the early days of the province the prepon- 
derance of the Friends was such that the settlement 
was in almost every respect a Quaker community ; 
but in time the character of the immigration which 
steadily swelled the numbers of the city population 
changed. It was no longer the poor and the persecuted 
who fled to Philadelphia ; the glowing reports of the 
prosperity of the colony, published in Europe, at- 
tracted many people, merchants with ample means 
men of rank and of culture, who brought their families 
to this new Garden of Eden, adventurers who ex- 
pected to make their fortunes in that wonderful El- 

2 The names of some of the dignitaries who officiated on this occasion 
were as follows: 

Master-printers— Andrew Bradford, Samuel Keimer, and Jacob 

City printer — Andrew Bradford. 

Sheriff — Owen Roberts. 

Treasurer of the province — Samuel Preston. 

Postmaster — Henry Flower. 

Keeper of the rolls — Robert Asheton. 

Keeper of the seal — James Logan. 



dorado. The ideas and habits brought by these new- 
comers could not but clash with the unostentatious 
quiet ways of the Friends. Their moral and religious 
views were different. What some deemed innocent 
pleasures the others condemned as sinful practices. 
Too much freedom on the one side, too much restraint 
on the other, created social antagonism. Time alone 
could effect the desirable fusion, and its work was 
slow. When, therefore, we describe customs that do 
not agree with the principles of Quakerism as set forth 
in the actions of their meetings, it must be under- 
stood that these customs were not followed by the 
Friends. On the other hand, it is clear that the de- 
cisions of the meetings could not be binding on the 
other denominations. Yet it must be confessed that 
if the Friends showed unnecessary opposition to 
many harmless practices, they never failed to oppose 
and condemn that which was really hurtful and im- 
moral. Their influence checked many a vice, their 
seriousness was a counterpoise to the frivolity of 
those who obeyed the worldly code brought from 
Europe. The happy result of this struggle for the 
good, was that in little more than half a century so- 
ciety in Philadelphia had reached that happy medium 
between extravagant frivolity and exaggerated seri- 
ousness which has stamped it indelibly with the mark 
of true gentility, and left it to this day without a 

But we must go back to the early days. Yearly 
Meeting adverted again and again to the pomp and 
extravagance introduced in funeral ceremonies. The 
practice of Friends was to take the body from the 
residence to the grave, where it was interred amid 
profound silence. After the burial the company ad- 
journed to the adjoining meeting-house, where there 
was speaking and praying. This silent parting with 
the dead, witnessed in an English burying-ground, 
inspired Miss Lucy Collins with the following very 
appropriate lines : 

" When expectation anxious wishing 
Eloquence of words to hear, 
The solemn pause of awful silence 
Mortifies the itching ear. 

"As such, perhaps, the great Dispenser 
Sees it best to deal with man, 
The depth of whose unerring counsel 
Human wisdom cannot scan. 

" The striking scene of death before us, 
What can more instructive plead? 
Since 'tis a road we all must follow, 
'Tis a path that none evade. 

" Though learned phrase and flowery language 
Please the proud, exalted part, 
Yet deeply searching home reflection 
Can alone amend the heart." 

In 1729 the meeting resolved against " the vanity 
and superstition of erecting monuments and entomb- 
ing the dead with singular notes or marks of distinc- 
tion, which is but worldly pomp and grandeur, for 
no encomium nor pompous interment can add worth 

to the deceased." It ordered the erection of tomb- 
stones over the graves of Friends to be stopped, and 
the tombstones already so placed to be removed. 
This order not having been generally obeyed, the 
meeting, in 1731, ordered the overseer to remove the 
tombstones so remaining. 

As a closing remark to the not over-gay subject of 
funerals and tombstones, we will note here that the 
custom of issuing special invitations to persons to 
attend funerals prevailed, and such importance was 
attached to this mark of respect to be paid the dead, 
that funerals were delayed if the parties invited did 
not arrive at the time appointed. Yearly Meeting 
very properly condemned such delays. The cards of 
invitation to funerals had deep mourning borders and 
other emblems of death. They were imported from 

Marriages between relatives were disapproved, and 
the question gave rise to much perplexity. In 1731 
it was determined that Yearly Meeting would not pro- 
ceed to prohibit marriages in degrees of affinity and 
consanguinity allowable by the laws of England. 
But this minute did not give satisfaction, the Burling- 
ton Monthly Meeting declaring that they had lately 
been exercised " with sundry marriages, to wit, one 
person marrying two sisters, etc., by persons profess- 
ing truth." A committee of fourteen Friends was 
appointed in the succeeding year to consider the 
matter. In 1733 the committee made its report, con- 
demning not only marriage with a sister-in-law, but 
with a wife's first cousin. The meeting did not think 
proper to prohibit marriages, " further than a man 
may not marry his wife's sister," but in 1739 a resolu- 
tion was adopted against the marriage of a man with 
his wife's first cousin. 

Courtship among the Quakers was a very solemn 
business. Before declaring himself, before he had a 
chance of winning the regard of the object of his 
affections, the lover must speak to her parents and 
obtain their permission to sue for her hand. This 
permission granted, he came " a courting;" that is, he 
must strive by his grave demeanor and solid conver- 
sation to make an impression on the fair one. While 
he strove to show his sentiments by these means he 
could not have the faintest idea of what were those 
of his inamorata toward him, unless a soft glance from 
her downcast eyes told the story. He could not, like 
other young men in worldly sphere, whisper his vows 
during a moonlight ramble, or squeeze her dainty 
fingers while crossing hands at the dance. The only 
pleasures they participated in together were eating 
and drinking and going to meeting. Such a thing as a 
pair of lovers going anywhere unattended by a chap- 
eron was unheard of. They must make love in pres- 
ence of witnesses. The chaperons, it is to be sup- 
posed, were often obligingly deaf and blind, for the 
young people generally came to a perfect understand- 

As the Friends ignored all frivolous pleasures, they 



made up for this deprivation by the more substantial 
enjoyments of the table. Every Monthly, Quarterly, 
and Yearly Meeting brought to the city considerable 
numbers of Friends who had to be entertained, and 
during their stay dinners and tea-parties were nu- 
merous. It is probable that the pleasure of meeting 
for social converse, more than the love of good cheer, 
constituted the principal attraction of these love- 

The city during the first half of the eighteenth 
century had considerably improved in appearance. 
Peter Kalm testified to this in his description of Phila- 
delphia in 1748, by the following remarks : 

" All the streets except two which are nearest to the river run in a 
straight line and make right angles at the intersections. Some are 
paved, others are not, and it seems less necessary since the ground is 
Bandy, and therefore soon absorbs the wet. But in most of the streets 
is a pavement of nags, a fathom or more broad, laid before the houses, 
and posts put on the outside three or four fathoms asunder. Under the 
roofs are gutters, which are carefully connected with pipes, and by this 
means those who walk under them when it rains, or when the snow 
melts, need not fear being wetted by the dropping from the roofs. 

"The houses make a good appearance, are frequently several stories 
high, and built either of bricks or of stone; but the former are more 
commonly used, since bricks are made before the town and are well 
burnt. The stone which has been employed in the building of other 
houses is a mixture of black or gray glimmer. Very good lime is 
burnt everywhere hereabouts for masonry. 


"ThB houses are covered with shingles. The wood for this purpose 
is taken from the OupresBm Ihyoidee, Linn., a tree which the Swedes here 
call the white juniper tree, and the English the white cedar. The wood 
is very light, rots less than any other, and for that reason is good for 
roofs, for it is not too heavy for the walls and will Berve for forty or fifty 
years together. 

* * * * ******* 

"The good and clear water in Philadelphia is likewise one of its ad- 
vantages. For though there are no fountains in the town yet, there is 
a well in every house and several in the Btreets, all which afford excel- 
lent water for boiling, drinking, washing, and other uses. The water is 
commonly met with at the depth of forty feet. The water of the river 
Delaware is likewise good." 

A more particular description of some of the build- 
ings erected just before or soon after Mr. Kalm's 
visit will not be without interest. 

A very remarkable building was the frame house 
of Benjamin Loxley, at the southeast corner of Little 
Dock and Second Streets. The construction was pe- 
culiar. Across the whole front was a large balcony 
sustained by the walls of the room below, and above 
this balcony the roof continued from the main por- 
tion of the house, and was sustained by very large 
carved cantalivers. Thus protected from sun and 
rain, and commanding a good view of the street, the 
balcony made an excellent rostrum. Watson says 
that when Whitefield first visited Philadelphia he 
preached from the balcony of Loxley's house to a 
very large congregation which had assembled in the 
street below, and wherever they could obtain a place 
for hearing. According to this version the Loxley 
house must have been built between 1725 and 1750, 
but Mr. Westcott, in his " Historic Mansions and 
Buildings of Philadelphia," shows that the lot upon 
which this house was built was conveyed by George 
Clymer to Benjamin Loxley on the 20th of April, 

1759. The building known as the Loxley House, 
therefore, could only have been erected subsequent 
to that date, and Whitefield must have preached from 
it on his sixth or seventh visit to America. 

Immediately opposite this house was a spring, called 
Bathsheba's Bath and Bower. This title has been cu- 
riously accounted for by the statement that the person 
who fitted up the spring was named Bathsheba Bow- 
ers. It is stated that she built a small house near the 
spring, furnished it with table and cups, and threw in 
the additional attraction of a library of books. 

Loxley was a carpenter, and in 1744 resided on Arch 
Street, between Third and Fourth. In 1751 he had 
bought two lots on the south side of Spruce Street, 
between Front and Second, on which he erected 
houses and cut through a court, afterward known as 
Loxley Court. He subsequently made other pur- 
chases, which made him the owner of the greater 
part of the square between Front and Second and 
Union and Spruce Streets. 

On the north side of Chestnut Street, between 
Third and Fourth Streets, stood another peculiar- 
looking house. It was built by David Brientnall, 
who lived in another house, where he kept his store, 
at the southwest corner of Hudson's Alley. The 
house on Chestnut Street was built of stone, two 
stories high, with a gable attic. There was a pent- 
roof over the first story, and the eaves were extended 
over the second story, pent-roof fashion, for a consid- 
erable distance from the cornice. The gable was flat- 
tened in front, in the style of the church of St. Mi- 
chael's, Fifth and Cherry Streets. This house was 
occupied for a long time by an invalid officer from 
Barbadoes. After Brientnall's death, in 1731, his 
widow moved into this house, where she kept a tav- 
ern at the sign of the Hen and Chickens. Subse- 
quently it became the residence of Anthony Benezet, 
who died in it in 1784. It became quite noted as the 
Benezet House. An engraving of it was made by 
Strickland, the architect, and published in the Port- 
folio of 1818. 

On Third Street, some distance below Walnut, was 
the elegant mansion built in 1746 for Charles Will- 
ing, merchant, who was a member of the City Coun- 
cil, and afterward mayor. It was constructed by 
John Palmer, bricklayer, after the model of the 
homestead buildings of the Willing family at Bristol, 
England. The door-posts and pediments were of 
Bath stone, imported from England, ready for imme- 
diate use. In front of this house two fine button- 
wood-trees were planted in 1749 by Thomas Willing 
and John Palmer. They grew luxuriantly, and are 
still remembered by our older citizens. The survivor 
of these trees was cut down when the Pennsylvania 
Railroad Company erected its office upon the prem- 
ises of the Willing mansion, about the year 1857. 
Charles Willing was brought to America in 1728 by 
his father, Thomas Willing, who established him in 
business in the same year. 



One of the handsomest dwellings in the city was 
that of Charles Norris, erected in 1750, in Chestnut 
Street, between Fourth and Fifth. The following 
complete description of it is from the pen of the late 
Charles A. Poulson : 

" It was a spacious and very commodious dwelling, and in its palmy 
days was said to bo esteemed one of great elegance and splendor. The 
main bouse was sixty feet front, and its ground-floor consisted of four 
rooms, which were intersected by a wide hall running through its cen- 
tre to a cross entry at the foot of the spacious staircase, with doors open- 
ing into the piazzas ou the east and west sides. The stairwuy, which 
entirely occupied the middle section of the building, was a fine-grained, 
highly-polished wild-cherry wood, so dark and well kept as to be taken 
for mahogany. It was lighted by windows in every story, and its fiat 
roof, surrounded by a balcony, gave to the whole building an uncom- 
mon appearance. Beyond it was a small room, formerly of much com- 
fort, in which a fire was kept up in winter, as well as in the parlor, 
where the housekeeper used to sit. Adjoining to this room, on the 


[From an old drawing in Philadelphia Library.] 

east, was a large kitchen, with a spacious fireplace. In the rear of the 
kitchen and housekeeper's room, and facing the south, was the green- 
house, which contained the best collection of exotics in the province at 
that period. It was well contrived, for the entrance iuto its stove waB 
in the corner of the kitchen chimney, and a few chunks of hickory- 
wood put into it at bedtime prevented any danger from the cold. The 
hot-house (for the mansion had a pretty little one) was the first of the 
kind in our city, where excellent pineapples were raised. It was 
healed in like manner from the chimney of the wash-house, — a detached 
building to the east, where was a large copper boiler, oven, and other 
accommodations for a large family. 

"The mansion-houBe was three stories high, and above-stairs con- 
tained chambers and light closets most convenient and pleasant, besides 
a large drawing-room, whose strong and substantial furniture, brightly 
rubbed, and Turkey carpets (when carpets were yet a luxury not every- 
where to be seen) were often greatly admired; and to this enumeration 
of rooms of all description may be added that of an excelleut laundry 
over the kitchen, and an airy apartment with deep shelves to dry herbs, 
which were cultivated in ample quantities in the garden, and used to 
be given away to the sick in winter. Indeed, it was the only place at 
that time in the city where they could be had, and the applications were 
often numerous, and the ability to answer them was a great pleasure to 
the kind and charituble ladies of the household. The cellars and vaults 
under the house were excellent, and by a contrivance in hydraulics 
water was introduced into the cellar designed for a dairy, and also car- 
ried by leaden pipes to the flat ruof of the eastern piazza, and to that on 
the top of the house, where were cisterns lined with lead to receive the 
water in case of Are. It furnished more lead than any house in town 
to make bullets to repel the enemy during the Revolutionary war. The 

whole house, with its balconies and piazzas, was in its appearance alto- 
gether singular, and in its days of splendor, with its ample lot extend- 
ing to Fifth Street, and garden undiminished, was really a beautiful 

"The garden yet remains to he described, — a spot of elegance and 
floral beauty. It was laid out in square parterres and beds, regularly 
intersected by graveled and grass walks and alleys, yet some of the lafr- 
ter were so completely hid by the trees by which they were bordered as 
to be secluded and rural. A green bank, with flights of stone Bteps, led 
the way into the garden, and a profusion of beautiful flowers and shrubs 
first met the view. The western part was more irregular, and contained 
on a high dry spot, facing the south, and defended from the north by a 
high board fence, the hot-beds and seed-house, and led to a very shaded 
walk reaching to the extremity of the grounds, with vines, covering the 
fence, of the finest sort of grapes, and hid on the other side from the rest 
of the garden by a continuation of espaliers of the finest kind and in 
the most flourishing condition, and this walk opened into a little spot, 
separated by a slight railing, and through this a path led to a gate 
opening into the yard of a cottage, which was the residence of the gar- 
dener. It was a charming little retirement, and so secluded and quiet 
that it might have been thought to belong to a remote 
village, although the fence of its inclosure fronted on 
Fifth Street. 

"The garden was plentifully stocked with the finest 
fruits. An old Swiss gardener was employed in it for 
over a quarter of a century, and one of the peculiarities 
of the family was the long time that the same faceB com- 
■ : ":"- posed its household. The coachman lived there as long 

as the gardener, for in fifty years the family had but 

Another fine house, not unlike the Wil- 
ling mansion in general appearance, was 
erected in 1745-46, by Edward Shippen, 
son of Joseph Shippen, on the west side of 
Fourth Street, below Walnut. It was of 
brick, three stories in height, forty-two feet 
front, and forty-four feet deep. A grand 
house for the time. The doorway in the 
centre was of stone ; the steps, in the form 
of a truncated pyramid, were of soapstone, 
and the bricks were black and red. Mr. 
Shippen lived in this house from the time 
it was erected until very near the time of 
his death, in 1806, during which period he had 
been president of the Court of Common Pleas and 
Quarter Sessions of the city and county of Phila- 
delphia under the proprietary government, and an 
associate justice of the Supreme Court, and chief 
justice under the commonwealth. A sad memory is 
attached to this house. There, on the 8th of April, 
1779, a large assembly of friends and relations met to 
witness the nuptials of Judge Shippen/s sixth child 
and fifth daughter, Margaret, to a brave and honored 
soldier of the United States, one who stood high in 
the esteem of his broth er-officers and of his chief. 
The bride was the leading belle of fashionable so- 
ciety. Warm were the congratulations of the guests 
upon the bright future that awaited the young couple. 
Mockery of human wisdom ! The man whose alliance 
was to bring additional lustre to one of the most dis- 
tinguished families of Philadelphia was Gen. Bene- 
dict Arnold, and ere long the venerable Judge Ship- 
pen bowed his head in shame, for his son-in-law was 
a traitor to his native land, alone in his infamy, the 
only American officer of high rank who betrayed the 



cause of liberty during the long struggle and terrible 
ordeal of the Revolution. 

On Chestnut Street, between Fifth and Sixth, was, 
in an unfinished condition at that time, the State- 
House, commenced in 1732. Part of the building 
was occupied by the Assembly in 1736, but the whole 
was not finished till the end of 1744. 

^ST'-V^'?"??^^*-- " *-?s? : 


On the west side of Fourth Street, south of Mul- 
berry Street, was the Academy. It was erected as a 
house of public worship, to contain also a charity 
school, in 1740, for a mixed congregation under the 
celebrated preacher, George Whitefield. It was used 
for these purposes until the year 1749, when, owing 
to the efforts of Benjamin Franklin, it was purchased, 
and converted into an academy, with the condition 
of partitioning off and reserving to the use of itiner- 
ants a preaching-hall therein forever. In 1753 the 
Academy had already attained great repute. It had, 
according to a manuscript letter from Richard Peters 
to Thomas Penn, quoted by Watson, sixty-five hoys 
from the neighboring colonies. 

Boarding-schools for young ladies were not known 
at that time. The girls were taught in common with 
the boys, and their instruction was, for a long time, 
confined to the elementary branches facetiously des- 
ignated as the three R's ; but they were instructed in 
the ornamental branches specially intended for their 
sex, — embroidery, music, drawing, etc. A teacher of 
the name of Horton first started the idea of a sepa- 
rate school for girls, and proposed to teach them 
grammar, geography, and other branches of learning. 
The pretentious names of " academies," " seminaries," 
" lyceums," etc., were not given to private institu- 
tions until after the year 1770. A Mr. Griscom was 
the first to advertise a private academy. Misses' 
boarding-schools came into existence toward the 
time of the Revolution. The old English system 
of flogging prevailed in all the schools. The boys 
were made to strip off their jackets and the girls 
to take off their stays, the better to feel the blows 
dealt with a leather strap. 

An amusing anecdote of John Todd, the school- 
master, is told in the " Annals." This old gentleman 
seems to have brought the art of flogging to perfec- 
tion and to have found a certain delight in inflicting 
that punishment. Holding firmly the victim horsed 
across his knee, he would lay on measured strokes, 
asking after each otherstroke, "Doesithurt?" "Oh! 
yes, master!" the writhing culprit would whimper. 
" Then I'll make it hurt thee more, intolerable being. 
Nothing in nature is able to prevail upon thee but 
my strap." He had one boy named George Fudge, 
who usually wore leather breeches, with which he 
put strap and master at defiance. He seized him one 
day and, after giving him a sound thrashing, inquired, 
almost breathless with rage, "Does it not hurt?" 
To his discomfiture and the astonishment of the 
quaking scholars, Fudge cried out, " No ! Hurray 
for leather crackers !" The irate Todd flung him 
sprawling on the floor, with these parting words, 
" Intolerable being ! Get out of my school. Noth- 
ing in nature is able to prevail upon thee, not even 
my strap." 

There were several handsome country-houses in the 
neighborhood of the city. Mr. Logan's house, on the 
Germantown road above Nicetown, was built in 1728, 
and received the name of Stenton. It was a plain 
two-story brick building, with a pent-roof and attics, 
sufficiently spacious to insure ease and elegance. 
Mrs. Sarah Butler Wister, in the sketch of Deborah 
Logan, in " Worthy Women of our First Century," 
gives the following charming description of Stenton : 
" Round the "house there was the quiet stir and move- 
ment of a country-place, with its large gardens full 
of old-fashioned flowers and fruits, its poultry-yard, 
and stables. The latter were connected with the 
house by an underground passage, which led to a 
concealed staircase and a door under the roof, like 
the ' priest's escape' in some old English country- 
seats. . . . The offices surrounded the main building, 
connected with it by brick courts and covered ways. 
They were all at the hack, and so disposed as to en- 
hance the picturesque and dignified air of the old 
mansion, the interior of which is as curious to modern 
eyes as it is imposing. One enters by a brick hall, 
opposite to which is the magnificent double staircase, 
while right and left are lofty rooms covered with fine 
old-fashioned wood-work, in some of them the wain- 
scot being carried up to the ceiling above the 
chimney- place, which in all the apartments was a 
vast opening set round with blue and white sculptured 
tiles of the most grotesque devices. There are corner 
cupboards, and in some of the rooms cupboards in 
arched niches over the mantel-pieces, capital show- 
cases for the rare china and magnificent old silver 
which adorned the dinner-table on state occasions. 
Half of the front of the house in the second story 
was taken up by one large, finely-lighted room, the 
library of the book-loving masters of the place." 

Says Mr. Westcott, in " Historic Mansions," " The 



grounds were adorned with fine old trees. A splen- 
did avenue of hemlocks — which legend would only be 
satisfied with declaring were planted by William Penn, 
although the poor man was dead years before Sten- 
ton was built — led up to the house. The Wingohock- 
ing meandered through the plantation, lighting up 
the landscape with brightness wherever its placid sur- 
face was seen. Stenton was a house for the living, but 
the affection which the owners had for it connected 
with the estate in time a last resting-place for the 
dead. The family graveyard is romantically situated, 
surrounded with old trees and with all the accessories 
of a spot to be picked out as a beautiful garden of the 

After Stenton was built, it was first occupied as a 
summer residence, but in time it became Mr. Logan's 
permanent dwelling until the time of his death, in 
1751. 1 Stenton then passed into the hands of the 
eldest son, William, who was born on the place. He 
had been brought up to trade, but he now gave it up 
and removed to the family seat. He was a member 
of the Governor's Council in 1747. William Logan 
imitated his father in hospitality toward the Indians 
and in public exertions on their behalf. He divided 
his time between the pursuit of agriculture and trav- 
eling. He was in England during the war of the 
Revolution, and took no part in the great struggle. 
He died in 1776. 

Before we leave Stenton let us note that it was 
there Thomas Godfrey, glazier, — already mentioned 
in these pages as one of the original members of the 

[From an old drawing in Philadelphia Library.] 

junto founded by Franklin, under the name of the 
"Leather Apron Club," — discovered the principle 
upon which he constructed his improvement on 
Davis' quadrant (this improved quadrant superseded 
the other, and has scarcely been improved upon 
since). This discovery, like most all great discov- 
eries, was due to accident. A piece of broken glass, 
which had fallen in such a manner as to reflect the 

1 A full notice of Mr. Logan's life has been given at page TGI. 

sun, engaged Mr. Godfrey's attention while he was at 
work. To his philosophic mind — for he was no com- 
mon glazier, but made optics and mathematics his 
study — this was a revelation. Quitting his work he 
hastened to Mr. Logan's library, and taking down a 
volume of Newton, he began to search its pages for a 
confirmation of his own theory. Mr. Logan coming 
in while he was thus engaged, Godfrey told him of 
the incident and explained to him the improved in- 
strument he had in his mind. Mr. Logan understood 
at once the value of the discovery, and warmly en- 
couraged Godfrey to put it in shape. Godfrey's quad- 
rant was first tried in Delaware Bay by Joshua Fisher, 
of Lewes, and afterward at sea, but another, in the 
mean time, had pirated the invention, described it 
before the Royal Society in London, and succeeded 
in affixing his name to it. Few who handle " Had- 
ley's" quadrant are aware of the fact that its real in- 
ventor was Thomas Godfrey, the Philadelphia glazier. 
Another elegant and spacious country-house was 
Bush Hill, erected in 1740 by Andrew Hamilton, the 
celebrated lawyer and member of the Assembly, on a 
tract, portion of Springettsbury Manor, which he had 
purchased from the Penns some years previous. Mr. 
Hamilton did not live long after erecting this man- 
sion, and at his death it went to his eldest son, James 
Hamilton, who was subsequently Governor of the 
province. After the Governor's death, Bush Hill 
does not seem to have been occupied by any member 
of the family. John Adams when he was Vice-Presi- 
dent of the United States (1790) lived in it for two 
or three years. In 1793, when 
the yellow fever was raging in 
Philadelphia, the mansion was 
unoccupied. William Hamil- 
ton (Jr.), the owner, being in 
Europe, it was taken posses- 
sion of by the city and used as 
a yellow-fever hospital. The 
citizens' committee fearing a 
return of the epidemic, leased 
the property in 1795 from Mr. 
Hamilton for twenty-five hun- 
dred dollars. The Bush Hill 
estate was finally sold by the 
Hamilton family some time 
after the Revolution to a com- 
pany of speculators in real 
estate, but the speculation 
proved a bad one, and the property went back to 
the Hamiltons. The house became a tavern and 
place of resort of some reputation at one time. It 
was burned down about the year 1808. The solid 
old walls stood the fiery ordeal, and Isaac Macauley, 
who bought the property, used them in fitting up an 
oil-cloth and floor-cloth manufactory. It was used 
for this purpose until 1871. In 1875 the old build- 
ing was finally torn down and new houses erected 
upon the site, which was then on the north side of 



Buttonwood Street, between Seventeenth and Eigh- 

The first Andrew Hamilton had purchased from 
Stephen Jackson a large piece of ground in Blockley 
township, west of the Schuylkill, near and south of 
Market Street, and extending down to the Nanganesy 
(or Mill) Creek. He devised this property to his son 
Andrew, who, dying six years afterward, devised it to 
his son William Hamilton. This property was called 
The Woodlands. There was a comfortable house on 
it, which was torn down some time before the Revo- 
lution, and a magnificent mansion built upon the 
site. The following description of the Woodlands 
mansion, written in 1830, will be read with interest: 

"The building embraces three different orders of architecture, bat 
the Doric prevails. The north trace is ornamented in the front with six 
Ionic pilasters, and on each side is a pavilion ; the south front has a 
magnificent portico, twenty-four feet in height, supported liy six stately 
Tuscan columns. The vestibule at the north entrance is sixteen feet in 
diameter, from which a corridor leads on the east side to an elegant 
dining-room of an oval figure, the length of which is thirty feet and on 
the breadth twenty-two. Another corridor on the west side leads to the 
library, u square room with two bowB, thirty by eighteen. In the 
library are many fine specimens of art, among which are several family 
portraits by eminent British and American artists. With these rooms 
communicate two others of smaller size, decorated with the works of 
several of the ancient painters from the Italian, Dutch, and Flemish 
schools, many of whicli pieces are of great merit. The grounds are in 
extent about ten acres, and contain a variety of indigenous and exotic 
trees and plants, chosen for their foliage or fragrance, and the scene is 
diversified by land and water in a very tasteful manner. A winding 
walk leads through the shrubberies and copses. At one spot there is a 
charming prospect of the city, at another a large expanse of water is 
visible. At the descent is seen a creek, overhung with rocky fragmouts 
and shaded by the gloom of the forest. Ascending from (hence, the 
greenhouse appears in view, the front of which, including the hot- 
house on each side, measures one hundred and forty feet, and contains 
nearly ten thousand plants. There is surely no city on the continent 
in whose vicinity more beautiful country-seats can be found than in the 
vicinity of Philadelphia, and among these The Woodlands are conspicu- 
ous for their taste and elegance. The admirers of rural beauty may 
hero find many objects to arrest their curiosity and to invite their 

Michaux, who visited Philadelphia in 1802, speaks 
of The Woodlands in this manner: "The absence of 
Mr. W. Hamilton deprived me of the pleasure of 
seeing him ; notwithstanding, I went into his mag- 
nificent garden, situate upon the borders of the 
Schuylkill, about four miles from Philadelphia. His 
collection of exotics is immense, and remarkable for 
plants from New Holland, all the trees and shrubs of 
the United States, at least those that could stand the 
winter at Philadelphia after having once removed 
from their native soil ; in short, it would be impossible 
to find a more agreeable situation than the residence 
of Mr. W. Hamilton." 

Griswold speaks of The Woodlands as ''a very 
charming spot," and says, "Mr. William Hamilton, 
who built the house and decorated the grounds, was 
a man of great taste in such matters, and embellished 
his beautiful mansion with such paintings and other 
works of art as were attainable in that day. His 
table was the frequent resort of artists and bona 

In Blockley township, on the west bank of the 

Schuylkill, William Peters bought a piece of ground 
from Ruth Jones, widow of Daniel Jones, in 1742, . 
and built thereon a small stone house. He made this 
property his residence, and named it Belmont. The 
situation was beautiful, the property embracing an 
island in the Schuylkill River, and running from the 
western bank out beyond the New Ford road, subse- 
quently known as the Monument road. Some years 
later, the exact date is not known, the large mansion 
on the north, adjoining the small stone house, was 
built. Mr. Keyser, in " Fairmount Park," says of 
Belmont, " Its principal characteristics are a broad 
hall and small dormitories, small window-glass, and ■ 
heavy sashes, highly ornamented, and high, wooden 
mantel-pieces, a comfortable dining-room, and open 
fireplaces. One of these, in the hall, is still used ; 
the panel over it formerly held a landscape ; the coat- 
of-arms of the family remains perfect on the ceiling. 
Other ornamental devices about the mansion are 
recognizable as belonging to that early period. The 
roof has been raised ; the third story and piazza are 
modern. A library which adjoined the main house 
has also been removed since the judge's time. The 
date of the erection of the main out-building is fixed 
by a monogram, ' T. W. P., 1745,' cut on a slab set in 
the wall." The grounds are admirable, and contain 
some of the most superb trees in this country. The 
French traveler, Chastellux, designates Belmont as 
a " tasty little box in the most charming spot nature 
could embellish." Mr. Peters conveyed Belmont to 
his son Richard, who was born on the place in the 
first year of its occupancy. Richard Peters attained 
great fame as a patriot and as a judge of the United 
States District Court in Pennsylvania. After Judge 
Peters' death Belmont remained in possession of the 
family until the enlargement of Fairmount Park, 
when it came into the possession of the city of Phil- 

The description of so many mansions and fine 
houses erected during the first half of the eighteenth 
century may enable us to form an idea of the growth 
of Philadelphia, of increased wealth, introducing 
greater luxury in the mode of life of the inhabitants. 
Difficulties have been vanquished, fortunes have been 
made, society is no longer what it was at the departure 
of Penn ; it has become more worldly ; taste is more 
refined; the various elements of which the community 
was composed are more closely mingled, giving it a 
new character. 

Especially toward the close of the half-century has 
the progress been marked. A traveler returning to 
England after a tour in America, writes to the London 
Magazine in 1749 : 

" It almost surpasses belief (when we consider that there were scarce 
any houses there about ninety years ago) the great extent of the city 
of Philadelphia, in Pennsylvania. This hath, besides many others of 
near its length, one street of above a mile long, and the buildings as 
close together aB in most places in London. There were built last year, 
between dwelling-houses, warehouses, and store-houses, about one hun- 
dred and twenty. The prodigious increase is not to be wondered at 



when we consider that there arrive in this city yearly between three and 
five thousand Irish and Germans. — the most notable artificers of these 
staying generally in this city, and the peasants retiring to the country. 
Such is the plenty of provisions here that I have reckoned eighty car- 
casseB of beef on one market-day, — they having two of a week. I have 
likewise numbered sixty country wagons in town on the same market- 

The City of Brotherly Love continues to attract 
attention in Europe, and in 1759 we have another 
testimonial to its steady progress, in a notice which 
appeared in the " Grand Magazine of Universal In- 
telligence," published in London. The following is 
an extract from the article in question : 

" The two principal streets of the city are each one hundred feet wide, 
and most of the bouses have a small garden and orchard ; while several 
canals are cut from the nver, equally pleasant and useful. The wharves 
are spacious and well laid out, the principal being two .hundred feet 
wide, and to this a vessel of two hundred tons may lay her broadside. 
A great number of vessels have been built here, twenty having been 
upon the stocks atone time. The inhabitants are said to be at present 
about thirteen thousand. 

" Philadelphia has a great number of very wealthy merchants, — which 
is not at all surprising when we consider the great trade it carries on 
with the English, French, Spanish, Dutch, etc. Vast quantities of pro- 
duce are brought down the Delaware and Schuylkill, — the former being 
navigable more than two hundred miles above Philadelphia, and the 
latter about one hundred. The Dutch employ nine thousand wagons, 
each drawn by four horses, in bringing the produce of their farms to 
market. In the year 1749 three hundred and three vessels entered in- 
ward, and two hundred and ninety cleared outward. 1 ' 

Let us take an inside view of the city which already 
attracted the attention and elicited the praise of trav- 
elers. Notwithstanding that, at an early period, nar- 
row footwalks of brick had been laid in the principal 
thoroughfares, the beds of the streets had been left 
unpaved, or, where their miry and broken condition 
impeded travel, they were filled with pebbles. These 
improvements were generally made by the parties most 
interested, who would subscribe a sum sufficient to 
pay for the work. A general effort to have the streets 
paved was not made until 1761. A lottery was the 
means adopted to raise the necessary funds. There 
are frequent instances in the early history of the city 
of these lotteries organized for some object of public 
interest. The practice was not considered as a species 
of gambling; it was a voluntary tax, with a prospect 
of a profitable return for some of the lucky ones. 
The wealthy citizens subscribed freely, and every one 
used his influence to aid in the prompt sale of the 
tickets. The act for "regulating, pitching, paving, 
and cleansing the streets, lanes, and alleys, etc., 
within the settled parts of Philadelphia," was passed 
in 1762. The laborers employed on this work of 
paving were not very experienced, it seems, for one 
Purdon, a British soldier, related to John Purdon, 
store-keeper in Front Street, seeing how clumsily the 
men worked, offered to show them how to do it. He 
was a skilled pavior, and his services became so much 
in demand that the city officials obtained his release 
from the army by paying a substitute to fill his place. 

Curb-stones were not in use previous to 1786. Until 
that time the gutters were protected by short posts 
placed at intervals. The dirty condition of the streets 

was a cause of frequent complaint. In 1765, Robert 
Erwin is made "a scavenger for seeing the streets 
cleansed once a week." What would Erwin ask to 
undertake the job to-day? It is not on record that he 
made a fortune out of street dirt, but neither can we 
find any complaint that he did not keep the streets 

Next to cleaning the streets comes the question of 
lighting them at night and protecting their inhabit- 
ants. For a long time the belated citizen, unless he 
carried a lantern, had no other light to guide his steps 
and save him from tumbling in mud-holes than that 
which shone feebly through the smoke-dimmed panes 
of some tavern-window. A few street-lamps were 
then put up, owned by private citizens, who, finding 
it troublesome to attend to them, met in consultation 
and agreed to pay a man a certain monthly sum (each 
three shillings and ninepence, says John Smith in his 
manuscript journal) to light them nightly. Thus 
was the first lamp-lighter commissioned. In 1750 the 
grand jury reiterated their oft-made representations 
as to the dirty condition of the streets and the neces- 
sity of lighting them. An act providing for the light- 
ing of the streets was passed the following year, and 
the Gazette of October 3d (1751) announced that " on 
Monday last the streets began to be illuminated with 
lamps according to the act." 

The appointment of the first watchman appears on 
the minutes as follows : 

" July 1, 1700. It was unanimouslie agreed and assented to by ye 

Gov'r and Council that be appointed, and is hereby authorized 

and empowered, to go round ye town with a small bell in ye night time, 
to give notice of ye time of the night and the weather, and if anie dis- 
orders or danger happen by fire or otherwise in the night time to ac- 
quaint the constables thereof." 

The practice in the early times was for the Council 
to assign the duties of constables to certain citizens 
for a stated period. They were fined if they refused 
to act. No distinction was made in the selection, rich 
and poor, eminent or obscure, all were liable to be 
designated. The constables were charged to notify 
the grand jury of the nuisances occurring in their 
several wards, and to nominate the watchmen. The 
names of such meu as Joseph Shippen, Abram Car- 
penter, George Claypole, and Henry Preston appear 
in 1706 as fined five pounds " for neglect to serve as 
constables." In 1704, " Gyles Green and William 
Morris are presented as not serving their tour of duty 
as watchmen when nominated thereto." In 1742 the 
inconvenience of this system was admitted, and the 
grand jury represented the need of a stated watch and 
watch-house. Very little was done, however, for in 
1749 the grand jury insists strongly upon the fact 
that the five or six men employed as nightly watch- 
men, and who go their rounds in company, are a poor 
protection for so great a city, containing from two 
to three thousand houses and fifteen thousand inhab- 
itants. The watch was thereupon increased. 

That the city had remained so long with so few 



guardians, and these private citizens, who did duty 
for the common good, is the best evidence of the or- 
derly character of the young community. It was only 
when its population was swelled by the thousands 
who flocked to her shores yearly that we hear of 
thefts and robberies, of midnight brawls and de- 
bauchery, requiring a greater repressive force. And 
even then, how favorably it will compare with the 
great British metropolis ! London, in 1736, had only 
one thousand street-lamps, and those were only lighted 
in the winter months. Her few watchmen were, for 
the most part, feeble old men, with just strength 
enough left to sing out in wheezing voice the time of 
night and state of the weather, but totally incapable 
of arresting or terrifying the evil-doer. Very few of the 
streets were paved, and great water-spouts projecting 
from the roofs of the houses made foot travel impos- 
sible when it rained. As late as 1744 the streets of 
London were so unsafe that the lord mayor and alder- 
men went to the king with an address setting forth 
the terrible grievances of the inhabitants, who were 
terrified, robbed, and wounded in the streets, even 
" at such times as were deemed heretofore hours of 
security," and that the officers of justice have been 
shot, some dangerously wounded, and others mur- 
dered, in attempting to discharge their duty by ap- 
prehending the offenders. 

The shade-trees that embellished the streets of 
Philadelphia in those days were the buttonwood and 
the willow. The Lombardy poplar was introduced 
from Europe in 1786-87 by William Hamilton. While 
the grounds of some of the great mansions we have 
described could boast of rare flowers and shrubbery, 
the gardens in the city — almost every house had its 
garden — were bright only with the simple old-time 
favorites so neglected in these days of horticultural 
wonders, — the lilac, the rose, the snow-ball, the lily, 
the pink and tulip; above which the solemn sun- 
flower and rank hollyhock lifted their tall heads. 
Morning-glories and gourd-vines climbed over the 
porch or shaded the summer arbor. Every house, gen- 
erally, had its well. Public pumps were not numerous 
for some years. In 1744 the Union Fire Company 
offered five pounds reward for the apprehension of 
the persons " who stole the nozles from High Street 
and other streets." There were no public clocks to be 
consulted on the streets, but sun-dials were affixed to 
the walls of many houses for general convenience, as 
few people carried watches then. Mr. Watson men- 
tions as still existing (in 1842) a large dial against 
a house (formerly the residence of Anthony Morris) 
on the north side of Pine Street, opposite Friends' 
meeting-house ; another on South Second Street, and 
another on the north side of High Street, four or five 
doors west of Second Street. 

Stores were quite numerous, and the goods offered 
for sale in great variety. Merchants generally re- 
sided on the premises in which they had their stores, 
and their wives and daughters often assisted them in 

the cojunting-room. The retail trade was for the most 
part in the hands of women. The old European prac- 
tice of overhanging signs, bearing some device sym- 
bolic of the owner's trade, or often some fanciful name 
having not the slightest connection with it, had al- 
ways prevailed. It was carried on to such an extent as 
to become a positive nuisance. In 1769 the setting 
up of signs, boards, poles, or other devices', extending 
from the house into the street, as well as the main- 
taining of all such signs, after the 1st of January, 
1770, was prohibited, under penalty of a fine of five 
pounds. 1 An exception was made in favor of inn- 

1 A list of these signs, many of which are whimsical in conceit, has 
been compiled by Mr. Westcolt in his " History of Philadelphia." We 
insert it here as a historical curiosity : 

1751. — Henry Flowers, watchmaker, sign of Dial, Second Street, be- 
tween Chestnut and Alley ; Yellow Key, Market Street, end 
of Jersey Market, Glover Hunt, ironmonger; Three Bra«s Cocks, Sam- 
uel Powell, brass-founder, Third Street, near Race; Handsaw and 
Crown, Solomon Fussell, opposite Christ Church ; Hand and Shears, 
William Askin, Chestnut Street, near Second ; Dish, C. Bradford, pew- 
terer, Second and Arch Streets; Half-Moon, opposite Jersey Market, 
Peter Petridge, screen-maker; Sugar Loaf, Front and Catharine, John 
White ; Mortar and Dove, Second Street ; Sugar Loaf, Water, above 
Market, Cnpt. James Child; Tent, Thomas Lawrence, upholsterer, 
Second, opposite Church Alley; Three Bells, Thomas Gregory, brass- 
founder, Second, opposite Church ; Thomas Say and Isaac Bartram, 
Three Bnlt-beads, Second, above Arch; Founders 1 Arms, Second, near 
Market, John Smith and John Winters, who advertised to cast bells for 
churches, also brass mortars, mortar-pieces, cohorns, field-pieces, etc.; 
Cock, Second Street, Robert Mathews; Cradle and Coffin, Walnut 
Street, Samuel Williams, joiner ; Lock and Key, Arch Street, William 
Bush, hardware; Sugar Loaf and Saddle-tree, Strawberry Alley, John 
Carl, saddle-tree-maker ; Still and Golden Teakettle, Front, below Mar- 
ket, James Halden; Sloop, John Aris, Water, near Chestnut; Beaver, 
Samuel Howell, Chestnut, corner Strawberry Alley, dry-goods; White 
Stays, Second, near Market, John Aitkinson, stay-maker. 

1752. — Blue Heart, Second, opposite Black Horse Alley, Joseph Maull, 
shears-maker; Ring and Dove, Charles Dutens, near Indian King, Mar- 
ket Street; Paracelsus 1 Head, Fourth Street; Hearse, Second , opposite 
Christ Church, John Nice. 

1753. — Crown and Canister, Second, below Market, dry-goods ; Bible 
and Crown, Third Street, Stephen J. Potts; Hand and Brush, Second 
Street, Henry Barbasin, scourer; Star, Market Street, Ann Redmond, 
dry-goods; Pestle and Mortar, opposite Presbyterian Meeting-House, 
Market Street, William Chancellor, druggist, 

1754.— Sash Window, First [Front] Str'-et, opposite the green pump, a 
little above the sign of the Queen of Hungary, George Brooks, glazier, 
plumber, and painter; Lamp and Crown, Second, near the Court-HouBe, 
James Wagstaff, lamp-maker. 

1756. — Royal Bed, corner Second and Chestnut, Edward Weyman; 
Crown and Cushion, Front and Chestnut, James White and Thomas 
Lawrence, upholsterers; Black Boy and Trumpet, William Forrest; 
Scrutoire, near New Market wharf, Society Hill, Francis Trimball, 
chairmaker; Golden Ball, Christopher Marshall, Strawberry and Chest- 
nut, druggist. 

1768,— Scythe, Fourth and Market, Whitehead and Jonathan Hum- 
phries, hardware; Black Bear, Second, above Race, James Caufmau; 
Spinning Wheel, Market Street; Bell and Looking-glass, Chestnut 
Street, John Elliott; Fountain, Market Street, dry-goods ; Key, Market 
Street, Wagstaff & Hunt, mustard-makers; Saddlers 1 Arms, German- 
town; Three Bibles, John Bleakley, Market Street, opposite shambleB, 
books, etc. ; Golden Teakettle, Front Street; Gold-headed Cane, Second, 
below Walnut, Josiah Sherrard, sells bear-skins and hardware; Bottle 
and Three Bolt-heads, Second, above Arch, Say & Bartram, drugs ■ Tea- 
kettle and Canister, Benjamin Harbeson. 

1759.— Spread Eagle, Arch, near Third ; Hand and Earring, Chestnut 
Street, Austin Macknon, jeweler ; Blue Lion, Water, above Arch, John 
Ross, has a servant-girl for sale ; Dutch Fan, upper end of Market, be- 
tween Fourth and Firth, Adam Akert, wire-worker ; Knapsack, Chestnut 
Street, opposite Charles Norris 1 house, Martin Brand, knapsack-maker; 



Some of the old advertisements will enlighten us 
as to the choice the ladies had in dress-stuffs, though 
few, probably, can tell what the strange names mean. 
Articles for gentlemen were kept in the same stores. 

Hand and Pen, Race, between Front and Second, Peter Thompson, In- 
dia, China, and Madeira wine; Bell and Candlestick, upper end of 
Second Street, Dan. King, founder. 

17G0. — Pipe, Market Street, McLaughlin & Lane, drugs ; Prussian 
Hussar, Lovi Marks, tailor. 

1762.— Comb-maker, Strawberry Alley, Christopher Angier, maker of 
combs, powder-horns, and spoons; Blue Ointment Pot, Second, below 
George Tuvern, Luke Scanlon, drugs ; Crown and Cushion, next door to 
London Coffee-House, Blanche White ; Bible and Heart, Second Street, 
corner of Black Horse Alley, Andrew Stuart, printer : Sickle and Steel- 
yard, opposite the market, John Hendricks, cutter; Anchor and Hope, 
Martin Ashburn, late tavern-keeper, now baker, Poole's Bridge; Black- 
amoor, tobacconist, manufacturer of "fine pig-tail for gentlemen and 
ladies ;" Case Knife, Timothy Matlack, Market, uear Fourth, hardware ; 
Piece of Reed, Market, west of Sixth, George Leacher, reed-maker; 
Golden Pestle, Second, between Market and Chestnut, Isaac Smith 
and Robert Harris succeed McLean & Stuart; Crowu and Pearl, 
Ed. Milues, goldsmith, Second, near Chestnut; Coach, Second near 
Walnut, James Chapman, barber; English Hunting Saddle, north side 
Market, fourth door above new printing-office, John Young, Jr., 
6addler; Golden Bell and Three Cocks, Front, between Market and 
Arch, James Smith, brass-founder; Hat and Crown; Bakers' Arms, 
Northern Liberties, Martin Noll, baker; JEsop in the Shades, Wal- 
nut Street; Three Nuns, Robert Lever's, Third Street, d ry -goods ; 
James Rivington, bookseller, corner Market aud Front, opposite 
Coffee-House; Crown and Anvil, Second, near Spruce, Ben. Armitage; 
Ship, Thomas Harper, Strawberry Alley; Mariner, Crooked Billet wharf, 
James Mease; Crown, Ring aud Parrot, Front street, Samuel Alford; 
Fifty-six Pound Weight, Chestnut, opposite Three Tun Tavern, Be 
Normandy and Pierce; Blue Anchor and Orange Tree, Front, near 
German ; Three Reapers, Third Street, Edward Morris; Ship and Castle, 
Front, near Market, Anthony Hull ; Bible, Second, between Arch and 
Race, Zachariah Poulson, bookbinder; Hat and Feather, Second Street, 
opposite the Royal George, John Drinker, dry-goods. 

1704. — Indian and Pipe, Second and Race ; Whittington and his Cat, 
Third Street, Southwark ; Three Crown Sugar Loaves, Second, above 
Arch, David Shaffer; Two Green Canisters, Second, opposite Baptist 
meeting-house, grocery; Breeches and Gloves, Second, above Market, 
George Cooper. 

1765. — Mariner, Front, near Drawbridge, Richard Harrison, school- 
master; Ship in Distress, Water Street, Southwark, John Middleton ; 
Long Plane and Handsaw, Ilezekiah Niles, Church Alley; Boot and 
Spatterdaeh, Front Street, near the Drawbridge, Alexander Rutherford, 
Bhoemakcr; Blue Hand, Race Street, between Front and Second, Ever- 
ard Boulton, dyer; Architect, Chestnut, between Second and Third, 
James Lamb, carpenter ; Hand-in-Hand, west side of Second, between 
Race and Vine, Daniel Manse, hosier; Blue Tea Canister, Second, above 
Arch, Theodore Meminger; Teakettle, Still, and Showboard, Second, 
below Black Horse Alley, James Haldane, coppersmith; Breeches and 
Broadaxe, Front Street, near Poole's Hill, Anthony Woodcock, deerskin 
breeches and gloves; Unicorn and Mortar, Market, between Front and 
Second, John Sparhawk, druggist; Lamb and Star, Alexander Smith, 
tailor, Front, opposite Pewter Platter Alley ; Gilt Sickle, Second, above 
the church, Samuel Wheeler, cutler; Grindstone, Front, above Race, 
William Rusk, iron-monger ; Hand and Watch, Front, below Spruce, 
Samuel May and Richard Clarke, watchmakers ; Three Wise Men of 
the East, Market, between Sixth and Seventh ; Bible and Crown, Chest- 
nut Street, William Woodhonse, books; Swift's Heitd, Front, between 
Chestnut aud Walnut, John Dean, books; Hand and Box Iron, Spruce 
Street, near the new chapel, Alice Williams, late from London, does up 
and clear starches; Rainbow and Dove, Walnut Street, ThomaB Little- 
wood, silk scourer; Hadley's Quadrant, Front, between Chestnut and 
Walnut, Benjamin Condey, mathematical instruments; Seven Stars, 
Whito Horse Alley, Abel Gibbon, breech eB-maker, wnshes and mends 
breeches; Lime-Tree, Front, opposite Coombs' Alley, Abraham Smith, 
fruiterer; Naked Boy, Second, between Market and Chestnut, George 
Bartram, broadcloth ; Snuff Bottle, Water Street, between Market and 
Arch, Kearney & Gilbert; Gentleman and Lady, Norris Alloy, Levi 
Marks, tailor and habit-maker; Circulating Library, Second, between 
Race and Vine, LowiB Nicola; Carpenters' Arms, Third, above the jail, 

Peter Turner, a merchant, advertised, in 1738, that 
he had for sale "broadcloth, kerseys, grograms, taffe- 
tas, harabines, sooloots, grassetts, poplins, chinus 
(chintz), fox curtains, belladine silks, fine sleeve-but- 
tons, set in silver, and English periwigs." Other 
merchants advertised cotton romals, penascas, double 
and single sleetas, broad and narrow cadis, damask 
Florells, wove worsted patterns for breeches, women's 
and children's stays, garlix, watered barrogans, striped 
ducapes, mantuas, cherryderries, silk dunnadars, 
shaggyareen, seletius, chex, bunts, chelloes, satin- 
quilted petticoats. 

Alexander Miller advertised, in 1739, that at his 
store, the sign of the "Wig, in Second Street, were to 
be sold " A choice parcel of cawls, ribbons, roses, and 
fans, after the newest fashion, and likewise a large 
parcel of the best hard silk, where all gentlemen and 
others may be supplied with all sorts of periwigs after 
the best fashion now used in England, and at reason- 
able prices." 

In 1745, Mary Cahill, who lived in Front Street, 
below Chestnut, advertised that she had for sale gen- 
tlemen's velvet and leather caps, and ladies' and 
children's caps, mantlets, pilareens, black bags, roses 
for gentlemen's wigs, and turbans for negroes. 

Matthews & Charlton advertised, in 1744, that tljey. 
sold "tyes, bobs, majors, spencers, fox-tails or twists, 
and perrukes of English hair." In the same year 
there was for sale, at the house of John Sanders, sign 
of "The Huntsman," in the Northern Liberties, 
"men's New Market stiff crown black velvet jockey- 
caps, with or without capes." 

There was not any material change in the style of 

Samuel Carutbers, hardware; Dog and Golden Kettle, Arch Street; 
Green Frying-Pau, Market Street, opposite the shambleB, Dave Deshler, 
hardware; Chinese Balcony, Front, near Chestnut, Philip Wilson; 
Golden Slipper, Strawberry Alley, William Ross, from Scotland, shoe- 
store; Boerhave's Head, Second, near Walnut, Dr. Samuel Or m, drug- 
gist; Gold Laced Hat in Hand, Front Street, Richard Swann ; Bell and 
Looking-GInss, Walnut, near Third, John Elliott; Bible and Heart, 
William Evett, Second, between Market and Arch; Crown and Shoe, 
Fourth, above Market, Richard Dickinson, silk and stuff shoemaker; 
Scythe, Sickle, and Brauding Iron, Second, above Market, Samuel 
Wheeler; Golden Eagle, Chestnut, Ben. Randolph, carving, cabinet- 
ware, and wooden buttons; Blue Bonnet, Chestnut, between Frontand 
Second, Henry Marks, starch-maker ; Boerhaave's Head, Second and Wal- 
nut, Duffiold & Delany, druggists; Trowel and Hammer, Second, below 
Wnlnnt, Ab'm Wayne, dry-goods; Golden Lion, corner Second aud 
Chestnut, John Carnan, jeweler ; Golden Fleece's Head, Second, below 
Carter's Alley, George Bartram, woolen draper; Three Wise Men, Mar- 
ket, above Sixth, Tobias Rndulph ; Crowu and TuBsel, Front, below Arch, 
George Ritchio, upholsterer ; Golden Cup and Crown, Front, above the 
Drawbridge, Thomas Shields; West's Head, Second, near Walnut, Robt. 
Kennedy, pictures and prints ; Golden Ball, Second, between Chestnut 
and Walnut, Thomas Douglas, dry-goodB; Green Lamp, Chestnut, near 
Second, Eleanor Fitzgerald & Co., milliners. 

1772.— Rising Sun, Second, below Market, William Smith, iipothccary ; 
German Flute and Hautboy, Second, above Vine, Jacob Anthony, turner; 
Highland Man and Bear, Second Street. 

1773.— Lock, Jack, and Bell, Second, between Walnut and Chestnut, 
Alex. White Smith; Bell and Dragon, North Market, between Second 
and Third, Speakman & Carter; Golden Rose, Ludwick Kuhn, Arch 
Street; Golden Pelican, Second, above Arch, a distillery and a patent 
medicine store, Theodore Meminger; Hog, corner Second and Chestnut, 
John Hiinna. 



furniture in use at the beginning of the century. Yet 
it became more complete, as with increased prosperity 
there naturally came a desire to increase the comforts 
of home. Even without facts to support it, the infer- 
ence drawn must be correct. Home, and especially 
an American home, is the dominion of woman, there 
she reigns supreme. It is her taste which adorns it 
and makes it pleasant to behold, it is her love and 
her cheerful spirit which make it a haven of rest for 
ever-busy, plodding, tired man. Can we admit that 
those merchants and tradesmen whose fortunes rose 
with the growing prosperity of Philadelphia were 
content to hoard their money or add to their lands 
without giving their wives and daughters the enjoy- 
ments of those elegancies and comforts which must 
add to the happiness of the family circle? Granted 
that the tastes of the people were simple, that they 
were not inclined to show or extravagance, when 
with an increased trade the importation of manufac- 
tured wares obtained larger proportions, and that was 
easily procured in the city stores which had been 
hitherto rare and difficult to obtain, the ladies were 
not deprived of their rights, and, while the younger 
and unmarried might be eager to price "grograms 
and taffetas," or even look at " cherryderries, shaggy- 
areen, and chelloes," the worthy matron insisted 
upon having a good sofa for her parlor, and a large 
sideboard on which to display her newly-acquired 
glassware and her solid service of plate, — a present 
from the good husband on the anniversary of their 
marriage day, — or in which to secure the china or delf- 
ware,— the pewter having been exiled to the kitchen 
regions. Paper " for the lining of rooms" was adver- 
tised by Charles Hargrave in 1745. Paper-hangings 
and papier-machi work was manufactured in Phila- 
delphia in 1769 (as we have had occasion to remark) ; 
it is likely that between 1750 and 1760 there were a 
large number of houses where wallpaper had taken 
the place of the primitive whitewash. Carpets, in- 
troduced in 1750, did not come so speedily in gen- 
eral use ; but then they were expensive articles, and 
not very common in English households. Curtains 
of richer material, mantel-glasses and candelabra 
made their appearance in the parlor. Low bedsteads, 
of solid, carved mahogany, found their way to the 
chamber, although they did not supersede, to any ex- 
tent, the popular beds long in use. 

If there was an improvement in the furnishing of the 
average citizen's home, the wealthier Philadelphians, 
who erected splendid mansions and took such pains 
to beautify their grounds, could not do otherwise than 
buy furniture that would harmonize with the general 
arrangement of their houses. To the common paper- 
hanging they preferred wainscoting with some hard 
wood. Mr. Kalm says he saw in 1748, in Fair Hill, 
the country-seat of Mr. Norris, — one of the members 
of the Assembly, — a parlor wainscoted with boards of 
red cedar, which looked very well at the beginning, 
but was then quite faded and shabby. It was to be 

replaced with mahogany. The elaborately-carved 
and gilded furniture of Queen Anne's time, which 
remained so long in fashion, must have been in keep- 
ing with the grandeur of some of those Philadelphia 
mansions, and among the relics of olden time pre- 
served in some of our families may be found some of 
the curious little tables, cabinets, and clock-cases 
made of pieces of different kinds of wood and called 
" marketry," or more properly marguetterie, from the 
name of the ingenious inventor, the Frenchman Mar- 

One decided improvement introduced in most of 
the houses, to the great comfort of the family, was 
the Franklin stove, which revolutionized the time- 
honored but objectionable method of warming the 
houses by means of open fireplaces. Dr. Franklin's 
invention, made in 1742, was an open stove, the plates 
of which had passages or air-chambers between them, 
through which the air circulated, diffusing a greater 
amount of heat in the room, with a positive saving 
of fuel. Robert Grace cast some plates for it, and 
Franklin wrote and published a pamphlet entitled 
"An Account of the New Pennsylvania Fireplaces 
wherein their Construction is particularly explained," 
etc. About the same time, there was a sort of stove 
made like a square box, which was set in the side of 
the kitchen fireplace, passing through the wall, so as 
to present the back end in the adjoining room, and 
was known as the German stove. They were made 
by Christopher Sauer, of Germantown. It is not 
known which of the two stoves was first invented, 
but Franklin's was decidedly the better one, and it 
became generally adopted. 

There were no very material changes in the ladies' 
dresses, the hoop still maintaining its hold, as also 
the furbelows ; the robe was made low in front, the 
upper part of the stomacher and the short sleeves 
edged with point-lace. Aprons were in fashion, and 
were worn sometimes long and at other times short, 
exposing the richly embroidered petticoat. Capuchin 
hoods were in style. But the greatest change was in 
the dressing of the hair. The simple and elegant 
coiffure of natural curls, already described, was in 
vogue only a few years. The old style of building up 
the hair in a high pyramid suddenly reappeared with 
still more exaggerated proportions. The hair was 
carried up over wire frameworks, stiffened with 
pomade sprinkled with powder, and formed a bewil- 
dering edifice adorned with curls, flowers, and feathers. 
Sometimes a sort of a little hat was perched on the 
apex of this wondrous structure. How our grand- 
mothers ever had the patience to sit three or four 
hours under the manipulations of the hair-dresser, 
and how they could move, walk, and dance with such 
a load on their cranium, is the wonder of their grand- 
daughters. Jewels— rich bracelets, necklaces, and 
chains— were much worn. It was the fashion for a lady 
to carry a costly gold snuff-box with a looking-glass 
inside the lid ; as she opened the box to take or offer 



a pinch, she could cast a surreptitious glance at her 
fair visage and see if her rouge was not earning off, 
and if her " beauty-spots/' Le., patches, were still in 
the right places. 

Satire often attempted to check the extravagances 
of fashion, but with little success. So it has been in 
all times, and a very thick volume might be made 
with the thankless advice given, in verse alone, by 
well-meaning men to the adorable creatures who read, 
smiled, and forthwith went to have a consultation 
with their dress-maker or their modiste about the 
latest style of dress or the coming bonnet. During 
the troubles that culminated in the Revolution, strenu- 
ous efforts were made to discourage the use of foreign 
manufactures. The ladies were appealed to, and for 
a time their patriotism was equal to the greatest sac- 
rifices ; yet during the Revolutionary period we shall 
hear many complaints of their extravagance. Enthu- 
siasm and perseverance are very different virtues. 

The following lines appeared in Bradford's Journal 
(Dec. 3, 1767): 

" Young ladies in town and those tbat live round, 

Let a friend at this season advise you ; 
Since money's so scarce and times growing worse, 

Strange things may soon hap and surprise you. 
First, then, throw aside yonr high top-knots of pride; 

Wear none but your own country linen ; 
Of economy boast — let your pride be the most 

To show clothes of your own make and spinning. 
What if homespun, they say, is not quite su gay 

As brocades, yet be not in a passion ; 
For when once 'tis known this is much worn in town, 

One and all will cry out 'tis the fashion 1 
And as one all will agree that you'll not married be 

To sucli as will wear Loudon fact'ry ; 
But at first refuse — tell 'em such do you choose 

As encourage our own manufactory. 
No more ribbons wear, nor in rich dress appear; 

Love your country much more than fine things. 
Begin without passion — 'twill soon be the fashion 

To grace your smooth locks with twine strings. 
Throw aside your Bohca and your Green Hyson tea, 

And in all things with a new fashion duty ; 
Procure a good store of the choice Labradore ; 

For there'll soon be enough here to suit ye. 
These do without fear, and to all you'll appear 

Fair, charming, true, lovely, and clear. 
Tho 1 the times remain darkish, young men may be sparkish, 

And love you much stronger than ever." 

A Philadelphian, in 1769, sends to the Penny Post 
the following : 

" Pin a small bugle cap on as big as a crown ; 
Smout it off with a ribbon vulgo diet a pompon. 
Let your powder be gray ; and braid up your hair 
Like the mane of a colt to be sold at a fair. 
A short pair of jumps half an ell from your chin, 
To make you appear like one just lying-in. 
Before, for your breastpin, a stomacher bib on ; 
Ragout it with cutlers of silver and ribbon. 
Tour neck and your shoulders both naked should be — 
Was it not for Vandyke blown with sheva de freet 
Let your gown be a black, blue, yellow, or green, 
And frizzle your.elbows with ruffies sixteen. 
Furl off your lawn aprons with flounces in rows ; 
Puff and pucker up knots in your arms and your toes; 

Make your petticoats short, that a hoop eight yards wide 

May decently show how your garters are tied; 

With fringes of Dotting your dickey cabob ; 

On slippers of velvet set gold d la baube. 

But mount on French heels when you go to a dance — 

'Twas the fashion in England and likewise in France." 

But let us not anticipate. The period of which we 
were speaking was one of peace and security. We 
were describing the dress of the ladies ; they but 
copied the fashions of English society, with modera- 
tion doubtless, and, to the eternal honor of their 
womanhood, they did not copy its vices. Rev. An- 
drew Burnaby, who visited Philadelphia between 
1759 and 1760, was very favorably impressed with 
our belles. Here is what he said, — ■ 

"The women are exceedingly handsome and polite. They are nat- 
urally sprightly and fond of pleasure, and, upon the whole, are much 
more agreeable and accomplished than the men. Since theirintercourse 
with the English officers they are greatly improved, and, without flattery, 
many of them would not make bad figures even in the first assemblies 
in Europe. Their amusements are principally dancing in the winter, 
and in the summer forming parties of pleasure upon the Schuylkill and 
in the country. There is a Bociety of sixteen ladies and as many gen- 
tlemen, called the Fishing Company, who meet once in a fortnight upon 
the Schuylkill. They have a very pleasant room erected in a romantic 
situation on the banks of that river, where they generally dine and 
drink tea. There are several pretty walks around it, and some wild 
and rugged rocks, which, together with the water and fine groves that 
adorn the banks, form a most beautiful and picturesque scene. There 
are boats and fishing-tackle of all sorts, and the company divert them- 
selves with walking, fishing, going upon the water, dancing, singing, or 
conversing, just as they please. The ladies wear a uniform, and they 
appear with great ease and advantage from the neatness and simplicity 
of it. The first and most distinguished people of the colony are of this 
society, and it is very advantageous to a stranger to be introduced to it, 
as he thereby gets acquainted with the best and most respectable com- 
pany in Philadelphia. In winter, when there is snow on the ground, it 
is usual to make what they call sleigbing-parties, or to go upon it in 
sledges." l 

When we read of the polished society of those 
days, of their elegant dresses, their jewels and laces 
and inimitable fashions, we cannot help thinking of 
one or two things which they did not have, things the 
poorest woman of our day could not do without. 
Tooth-brushes, until quite recently, were unknown, 
and the fairest lady rubbed her teeth with a rag, 
which, horresco referens, she dipped in snuff! Then 
they had no knowledge of ice-cream or soda-water, 
the former not having been introduced in Philadel- 
phia until 1800 by a Mr. Bosio, who made a fortune, 
and the latter being a still more modern invention. 
A queer omission of the progress of the age was 
that they had no visiting or blank cards. Invitations 
to a ball or party were printed or written on the 
backs of playing-cards. All of which did not hinder 
the people from enjoying life. They were very fond 
of dancing, at least those who were not restrained by 
religious scruples. The City Assembly, established 
in 1748, had kept up its organization. It held its 

1 Mr. Westcott, in his " History of Philadelphia," says in regard to 
these impressions of travel of Mr. Burnaby, " As there is nothing in 
the minutes of 'The Colony on the Schuylkill* or Fort St. David's 
Fishing Company to Bhow that ladies were associate members, the club 
alluded to by Mr. Burnaby is probably the Mount Regale Fishing Com- 



meetings for some time at Hamilton's wharf, on the 
south side of the draw-bridge, and subsequently at the 
Freemason's Hall, Lodge Alley. The following- 
named ladies, belonging to the fashionable society of 
the time, were invited to grace with their presence a 
ball given by the Assembly in 1757 : 

Mrs. Allen, Mrs. Taylor, Mrs. Hamilton, Mvb. BrotherBon, Mrs. IngliB, 
Mrs. Jeykell, Mrs. Franks, Mrs. Lydia McCall, Sr., Mrs. Samuel McCall, 
Mrs. Samuel McCall, Jr., Mrs. Swift, Mrs. Sima, Mrs. Willcocke, Mrs. 
Lawrence, Sr., Mrs. Lawrence, Jr., MrB. Robertson, Mrs, Francis, Mrs. 
Greame, Mrs. Joseph Shippen, Mrs. Dolgreeo, Mrs. Pbineas Bond, Mrs. 
Burd, Mrs. Charles Steadman, Mrs. Thomas White, Mrs.'Johnes, Mrs. 
Warren, Mrs. Oswald, Mrs. Thomas Bond, Mrs. Davey, Mrs. William 
Humphreys, Mrs. Pennery, Mrs. Henry Harrison, Mrs. Bingham, Mrs. 
Clymer, Mrs. Wallace, Mrs. Ellis, MrB. Alexander Steadman, Mrs. Hop- 
kinson, MrB. Hockley, MrB. Marks, Miss Mollie Francis, Miss Betty 
Francis, Miss Osborn, Miss Sober, Miss Mollie Lawrence, Miss Kitty 
Lawrence, Mrs. George Smith, Miss Nancy Hickman, Miss Sallie Hun- 
lock, Miss Peggy Harding, Miss Mollie McCall, Miss Peggy McCall, MisB 
Lardner, Miss Betty Blumstead, Miss Rebecca Davis, Miss Jennie 
Greame, Miss Nellie McCall, Miss Randolph, Miss Sophia White, Mrs. 
Venables, Miss Hyatt, Miss Betty Cliffton, Miss Mollie Dick, Miss Fan- 
nie Jeykell, Miss Fannie Marks, Miss Peggy Oswald, Miss Betty Oswald, 
Miss Sallie Woodrop, MisB Mollie Oswald, Mrs. Willing, MisB Nancy 
Willing, Miss Dolly Willing, Mrs. Mcllvaine, Miss Betty Grydeu, Miss 
Sallie FiBhbourne, Miss Furnell, Miss Isabella Cairoie, Miss Pennyfather, 
Miss Jennie Richardson, Mrs. Reily, Mrs. Graydon, Mrs. Rosb, Mrs. 
Peter Bard, Mrs. Franklin, Miss Lucy De Normandie, Miss Phebe Wine- 
coop, Mrs. Harkly. 

Dancing-masters visited Philadelphia occasionally, 
giving the gay people an opportunity to learn the 
latest fashionable dance. In 1761, John Walsh ad- 
vertised that he taught "dancing in all its parts, after 
the most elegant tastes, together with a masquerade 
and a Spanish fandango, much in esteem." He de- 
clared that " he had the honor to perform before the 
Vice-King in Peru, with a royal bounty ; also with 
satisfaction in France, Italy, Chili, etc." His school- 
room was in Videll's Alley, " but he was to be spoke 
with" at Mrs. Harper's, in Spruce Street. In 1763 
John Baptiste Tyol advertised in the month of Au- 
gust that he had just come to town, and as soon as 
he cauld obtain a convenient room, and the weather 
became a little cooler, he intended opening a dancing- 
school. In order to make his merits known he stated 
that he had performed one year at the King's Opera- 
House, Haymarket; two years at the Theatre Royal, 
at Drury Lane, under Mr. Garrick ; three years at the 
Dublin Theatre, and in several of the cities of 
Germany, France, Portugal, and Italy. He added, 
"As he learns that a regular prudent dancing-master 
is much wanted here, he flatters himself that he will 
be able to meet the due encouragement of the public." 

Signor Sodi opened his dancing-school on Chestnut 
Street, back of the Fountain Tavern. He announced 
that he taught " rigadoons, paspies, etc.," all new 
French dances. In 1770 a Signor Gualda advertised 
a concert and ball at the Freemason's Lodge, admis- 
sion ten shillings, with the singular proviso, " If any 
lady or gentleman chooses to go away after the con- 
cert, the porter will return him one-half a crown." 

Much attention also was paid to music, principally 
of a sacred character. In 1752, Robert Coe modestly 

announced that, "conceiving himself capable of teach- 
ing to play on that agreeable instrument, the German 
flute,'' he offered to do so for fifteen shillings en- 
trance, and the same amount per month. He was to 
be found in " Third Street, being the next door but 
one above Mr. Joseph Fox's." But the worthy mu- 
sician has two strings to his bow, for he lets it be 
known that he also draws bills, bonds, leases, etc., 
at the house next door to the Horse and Groom, in 
Strawberry Alley. In 1759, Francis Alberti adver- 
tised that he taught the violin " in the best manner 
and neatest style according to the new Italian method. 
By the subscriber, an Italian born." In 1764, John 
Schneider, a German, offered to "teach gentlemen to 
play on the French horn." A concert of musical 
glasses, in 1765, was a great success. The singers of 
'Hallam and Douglass' company, Mr. Wools, Miss 
Wainwright, Miss Hallam, Mr. Wall, Miss Cheer, 
and others, occasionally gave concerts. They con- 
tributed not a little to increase the taste for music. 
The mandolin was the favorite instrument then, and 
Mr. Wall, of the theatre company, gave special les- 
sons on this instrument. 

Signor Gualda, in 1770, gave a "concert of vocal 
and instrumental music, solos, and concertos on vari- 
ous instruments, the favorite mandolin not excepted." 

The organ was introduced at the College and 
Academy a few years after it was built. Philip Fy- 
ring manufactured organs for Christ Church and 
other churches as early as 1762. 

While on the theme of music, we will note that 
the first piano, in all probability, that was built in 
this country, was made by John Behrent, in Third 
Street (opposite Coates' burying-ground, below Brown 
Street). He advertised in 1775 that he had "just 
finished an extraordinary instrument by the name of 
the piano-forte, made of mahogany, being of the 
nature of a harpsichord, with hammers and Beveral 

Duels, so frequent in England at that time, were of 
very rare occurrence in Philadelphia, yet a few did 
take place. In 1721, Solomon Fry, mariner, and 
Francis Jones fought with swords, and both were 
wounded. In 1750, Thomas Crosse and Hugh Davy 
fought also with swords, and Davy was wounded. It 
is not surprising, therefore, that some attention should 
have been given to the art of fencing. All gentlemen 
who desired to be known as fashionable and polite 
members of society learned the use of the sword. 
Fencing-masters, therefore, found occupation in Phila- 
delphia as well as dancing-masters, although they 
were not at first received with favor, as we have shown 
in the history of the first part of the eighteenth cen- 
tury. They were tolerated, however, even then, and 
at a later day met with no opposition. In 1756, Rich- 
ard Lyneall, professor of the small-sword and self- 
defense, notified the public that he was to be seen at 
the Tun Tavern, in Walnut Street.' In 1763, John De 
Florette, fencing-master at the Prince of Orange, in 



Second Street, notified the public that he taught the 
broadsword, backsword, spaderoon, and dagger. But 
this worthy Frenchman, not content with enumerating 
the weapons in the use of which he was skilled, added 
some advice to the young Philadelphians on the im- 
portance of a knowledge of fencing. " Young men 
without it have to put up with insults of the grossest 
nature, and much to their dishonor, whereas, were 
they masters of self-defense, they would be able to 
resent it in a genteel manner." 

The gentlemen's costume suffered a few alterations, 
and those for the better. The coat — no longer of 
velvet, silk, or satin, except for full-dress, but of strong 
cloth — was- square cut, with some simple trimming 
and black lining; the long-flapped waistcoat descend- 
ing very low, and the stockings drawn very high over 
the knee ; large hanging cuffs to the coat-sleeves, and 
lace ruffles. The skirts of the coat much less dis- 
tended with wire; stockings of blue or scarlet silk; 
square-toed, short-quartered shoe^, with high red heels 
and small buckles. All wore wigs, but of smaller 
size than before. The small three-cornered hat was 
laced with gold or silver galloon, and sometimes 
trimmed with feathers. 

Old advertisements will again assist us. Here is 
one relative to wigs : 

In 1760, Charles Eustace, peruke-maker, Walnut 
Street, between Front and Second, advertised that 
"gentlemen may be completely furnished with bag 
wigs of the neatest fashion, or of whatsoever fashion 
they choose ; also scratch wigs and scratch bob wigs, 
cut wigs and long gristle-dress wigs, and all others, as 
gentlemen may choose." 

Another, dated 1759, gives an idea of the uniforms 
of the Pennsylvania troops ; it refers to deserters from 
various commands. Deserters from Col. John Arm- 
strong's battalion, First Pennsylvania Regiment, 
were described as having worn green regimental coats, 
faced with red, red waistcoats, and buckskin breeches. 
Capt. John Singleton's company of the Pennsylvania 
new levies had green regimentals ; while Capt. James 
Armstrong's company, Pennsylvania Regiment of 
Foot, were advertised as wearing blue regimentals. 

In 1752 there appeared the advertisement of the 
first undertaker, James Humphries, in Second Street, 
one door below the Baptist Church. He also an- 
nounced that he had got a variety of mourning. In 
1753 a rival establishment was started by John Nice, 
opposite the Baptist Church. A new business in con- 
nection with funerals was inaugurated in 1766; Lydia 
Darragh, opposite the Golden Fleece, in Second 
Street, advertised that she was prepared " to lay out 
the dead, — a service greatly wanted, as she under- 

Very few Philadelphians kept a carriage in the 
olden time, and even hired vehicles were scarce ; 
traveling was done principally on horseback. Mr. 
Watson, in his "Annals," mentions — besides William 
Penn's "coach" and "calash," alluded to in the 

latter's letters to Logan — some of the oldest of these 
vehicles. He says that in 1761 there were only 
thirty-eight private carriages in Philadelphia; Wil- 
liam Allen, the chief justice, the Widow Lawrence, 
and Widow Martin were the only owners of coaches. 
William Peters and Thomas Willing owned the only 
two landaus. There were eighteen chariots enumer- 
ated, of which the proprietor and the Governor had 
each of them one. Fifteen chairs concluded the 
enumeration. He says that according to the recollec- 
tions of James Reed, who died in 1793, at an ad- 
vanced age, there were only eight four-wheeled car- 
riages kept in all the province ; they were : coaches, 
the Governor's (Gordon), Jonathan Dickinson's, 
Isaac Norris', Andrew Hamilton's, Anthony Pal- 
mer's ; four-wheeled chairs, drawn by two horses, 
James Logan's (Stenton), David Lloyd's (Chester), 
Lawrence Growden's (Bucks). Mrs. Shoemaker (aged 
ninety-five) told Mr. Watson that pleasure-carriages 
were very rare in her youth. She remembered that 
her grandfather had one, and that he used to say he 
was almost ashamed to appear abroad in it, although 
it was only a one-horse chair, lest he should bethought 
effeminate and proud. She remembered old Richard 
Wistar had one also. When she was about twenty, 
Charles Willing, merchant, brought a calash coach 
with him from England. This and Judge William 
Allen's were the only ones she had ever seen. 

In the manuscript of Du Simitiere he has preserved 
an enumeration of the persons, efghty-four in number, 
who kept carriages in Philadelphia in 1772. Four or 
five of these persons owned two carriages. 1 In the 

1 The American Historical Record, vol. ii., 1873, publishes this list of 
carriage-owners, furnished by a New Jersey correspondent. "We quote 
what follows, from the introductory remarks: "This list, like the 
famous Roll of Battle Abbey, has been tampered with, the name of 
' Tench Francis 1 being inserted in a different hand and darker ink than 
that of the original transcriber, and a strange hand in lead pencil has 
written opposite this name, ' added by J. F. F.' Watson gives 'eighty- 
four,' meaning the number of names, as we have shown above, and his 
manuscript Annals were finished in 1842. As ' Touch Francis' makes 
eighty-./uJe, it will be seen that it was inserted since that date. It was 
noticeable he is set down for a ' coach' and one ' chariot, or post wagon. 1 
A ' coach' was a special distinction in those days ; the list mentions eight 
only out of the eighty-four owners of other vehicles, and could hardly 
have been overlooked by the observant Du Simitiere." 

We condense the list, which is in tabular form in the Record. Richard 
Pen n, Governor, all sorts; James Hamilton, oue chariot; William Al- 
len, chief justice, one coach and one chariot; Dr. Graeme, one chariot; 
John Dickinson, lawyor, one chariot; Benjamin Chew, recorder of Phil- 
adelphia, lawyer, one coach, oue chariot; Joseph Galloway, Speaker of 
the Assembly, lawyer, one chariot; John Ross, lawyer, one chariot; 
Joseph Reed, lawyer, one chariot; Thomas Willing, merchant, one 
coach ; John Lawrence ; Thomas Lawrence, city vendue master; Edward 
Shippeu, Jr., Lynford Larduer, uncle to the Governor; Uichnrd Peters, 
D.D., rector of Christ Church, Philadelphia ; Robert Morris, merchant ; 
Archd. McCall, merchant; Samuel Neave, merchant; William West, 
merchant; Capt. Isaac Cox, merchant; William Moore, merchant; 
Capt. Samuel Mifflin, merchant; Daniel Rundle, merchant; David 
Franks, merchant, — each one chariot ; Daniel Bouezet, Samuel Smith, 
Samuel Purviance, Henry Kepple, merchant,— each oue coach-wagon ; 
Henry Kepple, Jr., one chariot; James Craig, merchant and ship- 
chandler; Andrew Hodge, merchant and Bhip bread-baker, — each one 
coach-wagon ; John Cadwalader, all sorts; William Straker, merchant; 
Capt. Williams, of the Engineers; Reynold Keen, Andrew Duche, 



year 1794 the number of pleasure-carriages taxed was 
847, to wit: 33 coaches, 157 coachees, 35 chariots, 22 
phaetons, 80 light wagons, and 520 chairs and sulkies. 
The carriage used by Gen. Washington while Pres- 
ident, and which had been imported for Governor 
Richard Penn, was the most splendid ever seen in 
the city. It was very large and heavy, and was 
drawn by four horses. A correspondent of Mr. 
Watson gives some facts about this vehicle, as seen 
by him in his youth, and, later, when it was a dese- 
crated and forgotten relic of the past : " It was of 
cream color, with much more of gilded carvings in 
the frame than is since used. Its strongest attractions 
were the relief ornaments on the panels, they being 
painted medallion pictures of playing cupids or naked 
children. That carriage I afterward saw in 1804-5 
in my store-yard at New Orleans, where it lay an out- 
cast in the weather, the result of a bad speculation in 
a certain Doctor Young, who had bought it at public 
sale, took it out to New Orleans for sale, and could find 
no one to buy it, where all were content with plain 
volantes. A far better speculation would have been to 
have taken it to the Marquis of Lansdown or other 
admirers of Washington in England." " It became 
in time," adds Mr. Watson, in a foot-note, " a kind 
of out-house, in which fowls roosted ; and in the 
great battle of New Orleans it stood between the 
combatants, and was greatly shot-ridden. Its goose- 
neck crane has been laid aside for me." 

Old advertisements will give us some information 
about vehicles for hire. In 1728, Thomas Skelton 
advertises in the Gazette that he has got " a four- 
wheeled chaise, on Chestnut Street, to be hired." He 
affixes prices, to wit: "For four persons to German- 
town, 12 shillings and 6 pence; to Frankford, 10 
shillings ; and to Gray's Ferry, 7 shillings and 6 pence 
to 10 shillings." 

In 1746, Abram Carpenter, a cooper, in Dock 
Street, near the Golden Fleece, calls in the assistance 
of his muse to tempt his customers with the follow- 
ing announcement : 

Sam. Powel, Dr. Thomas Bond, Dr. Phineas Bond, Dr. John Redman,— 
each one chariot ; Cant. Edward Stiles ; Widow Masters, mother to the 
Governor's lady,— each ono coach; "added by J. F. F." Tench Francis, 
merchant, one coach and one chariot; Joseph Sims, merchant, one 
coach-wagon; Widow Harrison, Widow Montgomery, Peggy Oswald,— 
each one chariot. September, carriages making for the following: 
Steinmctz, Morton, — each one chariot ; Peter Turner, Daniel Benezet, 
William Logan, James Logan, Israel remborton, — each one chariot; 
James Pemberton, merchant, one coach-wagon and one chariot; John 
Pemberton, preacher, ono chariot ; Joseph Pemberton, merchant, one 
coach ; Dr. Samuel Preston Moore and Henry Hill, Madeira merchant, 

each one chariot; Joseph Fox ; Hugh Roberts, iron-monger; Samuel 

Shoemaker, merchant; Joshua Howell, merchant; Reese Meredith, 
merchant; Abel James, merchant; Henry Drinker, Thomas Clifford, 
John Berne.ll, merchants,— each one coach-wagon ; Joseph Wharton, 
commonly called Duke Wharton, ono coach-wagon and one chariot; 
Thomas Wharton, Joseph Wharton, Jr., and Jacob Lewis, merchants; 
Samuel Morris; Richard Wistar, glass andhutton-maker; Samuel Emlen, 
Jr., preacher; James Bringhnrst, carpenter; Samuel Noble, John Mifflin, 
Anthony Morris, Joshua Fisher, Widow Greenleaf,— each one coach- 
wagon; George Emlen, Jr., merchant; and Elizabeth Norris, — each one 
chariot. (" Chariots" or " post-chaises" are the same vehicle.) 

"Two handsome chairs, 
With very good geers, 
With horses, or without, 
To carry friends about. 

" Likewise, saddle-horses, if gentlemen please, 
To carry them handsomely, much at their ease, 
Is to be hired by Abram Carpenter, cooper, 
Well known as a very good cask-cooper." 

Robert Robson, in 1759, advertised that he had 
" removed from Coombs' Alley to the sign of the 
Horse and Groom, at the corner of the fourteen 
houses in Fifth Street, above Sassafras, where gentle- 
men may be supplied with horses and chairs by the 
day or journey, and horses taken in to be kept by the 
night, day, or year. Said Robson will ride express 
for any who are pleased to employ him, who may de- 
pend on what they trust to his care. N.B. — Good 
pasturing." 1 

The fact of there being but little demand for car- 
riages did not deter an adventurous coach- and har- 
ness-maker from London and Bristol, named William 
Welsh, from trying his fortunes in Philadelphia. He 
advertised, in 1759, that he had set up the coach- 
making business in Market Street, and proceeded to 
dazzle the minds of the simple citizens by informing 
them that he had " the honor of being coachmaker 
to his royal Highness the Duke of Cumberland, her 
royal Highness the Princess Amelia, and the Prince 
of Hesse-Cassel, with dukes and lords of the first 
rank, together with the right worshipful John Clem- 
ent, Lord Mayor of London and City Corporation, 
in building the state coach, which had cost fifteen 
hundred pounds sterling, and which had given great 

History does not say that the good Philadelphians 
were induced to vie with those illustrious personages 
in the gorgeousness of their equipage, but the ob- 
servant Mr. Watson informs us that " merchants and 
professional gentlemen were quite content to keep a 
one-horse chair. These had none of the present 
trappings of silver-plate, nor were the chair-bodies 
varnished; plain paint alone adorned them, and 
brass rings and buckles were all the ornaments found 
on the harness ; the chairs were without springs, on 
leather bands, such as could now (1842) be made for 
fifty dollars." The ex-coachmaker to many High- 
nesses must have been highly disgusted with his 
American customers when he found them so easily 

Before we close our record of events in " Penn's 
City" and pass to the more exciting scenes of the 
Revolutionary period, mention should be made of 
certain houses erected during the third quarter of the 
century, and to which is attached some historic in- 
terest owing to the part taken in the Revolution 

> " The fourteen houses," usually called " the fourteen chimneys," stood 
west of Fifth Street, above Race, and had their fronts on Sassafras Alley. 
These houses, when first erected, were out of town, — a settlement by 
themselves. There was no obstruction between them and Fifth Street, 
and as a landmark they were well known. 



either by the men who built them, or by those who 
afterward lived in them. 

At the northeast corner of Third and Pine Streets 
stood a large house of peculiar aspect, erected by 
Anthony Duch6. It was three stories high, with a 
roof addition, somewhat like a modern mansard, 
decorated with urns and a railing; it had a centre 
building and two small wings with gables in front. 
A central dormer-window, decorated with scrolls, as- 
similated with the gables on either side. This house 
was occupied as a military hospital when the British 
troops came to Philadelphia after Braddock's defeat. 
Mr. Duchl gave this house to his son, Rev. Jacob 
Duch6, after the latter was made rector of Christ 
Church and St. Peter's. It afterward became the 
property of Chief Justice McKean. 

The fine house built by William Masters, some 
time before 1761, on the south side of Market Street, 
between Fifth and Sixth, was destined to acquire 
historic fame as the residence of George Washington 
while he was President of the United States. From 
that time it was designated as " The Washington 
Mansion." This property was conveyed by William 
Masters' widow to her daughter Mary, on the occasion 
of her marriage with Richard Penn. The young 
couple lived in it until their departure for Europe, in 
1775. When the British troops entered Philadelphia, 
Gen. Howe took possession of Richard Penn's man- 
sion. He made it his headquarters until the evacua- 
tion in 1778. Benedict Arnold coming to take com- 
mand of Philadelphia as military governor, took 
possession of the premises just vacated by Howe. 
He occupied them until July, 1780, when he left the 
city. The Sieur John Holker, consul-general of 
France, was the next occupant. The mansion was 
burned down in 1780, but the stout old walls remained 
standing. Robert Morris then obtained a lease of 
the grounds, and caused the house to be rebuilt and 
repaired. He occupied it until the removal of the 
seat of the Federal government from New York to 
Philadelphia. Mr. Morris then gave up the use of the 
mansion to President Washington. The mansion was 
occupied by Mr. Adams when he became President. 
It was subsequently turned into a hotel, and, finally, 
was torn down and three stores erected on the site. 

Richard Rush, in his "Reminiscences," gives his 
boyhood recollection of the mansion, as he saw it 
between 1790 and 1800, in these words, " It was a large 
double house ; few, if any, equal to it are at present in 
Philadelphia. The brick of the house was, even in 
my time, dark with age ; and two ancient lamp-posts, 
furnished with large lamps, which stood in front, 
marked it, in conjunction with the whole external 
aspect, as the abode of opulence and respectability 
before he became its august tenant. No market- 
house then stood on the street. To the east a brick 
wall, six or seven feet high, ran well on toward Fifth 
Street, until it met other houses (the first house, be- 
lieved to be now 514 and 516, also owned by Robert 

Morris, as I find, was occupied by Gen. Stewart) ; the 
wall inclosed a garden, which was shaded by lofty 
old trees, and ran back to what is now Minor Street, 
where the stables stood. To the west no building 
adjoined it, the nearest house in that direction being 
at the corner of Sixth and Market, where lived 
Robert Morris." 

On Third Street, between Willing's Alley and 
Spruce Street, were two houses built by Thomas Wil- 
ling. One of these houses was occupied by his son- 
in-law, Col. William Byrd, of Westover, Va. In 
1758, of the two Virginia regiments in the British 
service, one was commanded by Col. Byrd, the other 
by Col. Washington, of Mount Vernon. This house 
subsequently belonged to Andrew Allen and Chief 
Justice Chew. John Adams, describing the house 
which he visited in the chief justice's time, said, 
" We were shown into a grand entry and staircase, 
and into an elegant and most magnificent chamber, 
until dinner.'' 

The other house which Mr. Willing erected for 
his daughter Elizabeth, wife of Samuel Powell, Mr. 
Adams speaks of as "a splendid seat." 

Benjamin Franklin, before he went to Europe in 
1764, built a house on his lot on Market Street 
between Third and Fourth. It is the house Mrs. 
Franklin had just moved into when she wrote to her 
husband the letter already quoted, about furnishing 
the " new house." About 1785, when he was elected 
President of Pennsylvania, Franklin erected a new 
wing to his house, which was three stories high. The 
first story was a large apartment designed for the 
meetings of the Philosophical Society. His library 
was in the second story, and the third story was occu- 
pied as lodging-rooms. Franklin thought that he 
had effected some improvements. He said, — 

" None of the woodwork of one room communicates with the wood- 
work of any other room, and all the floors and even the steps of the 
stairs are plastered close to the boards, besides the plastering on the 
laths under the joists. There are also trap-doors to go out upon the 
roof, so that one may go out and wet the shingles in case of a neighbor- 
ing fire. But, indeed, I think the staircases should be stone and the 
floors tiled, as in Paris, and the roofs either tiled or slated." 

In 1765 Edward Penington erected a handsome 
house, built of red and black bricks, the prevailing 
taste at the time, on a large lot which he owned at 
the corner of Crown and Race Streets. The house 
with its stables and extensive back buildings occu- 
pied the ground to Fifth Street. During the Revo- 
lution this house became the headquarters of Lieut- 
Col. Henry Johnson, of the Twenty-eighth Regiment, 
British Regulars, afterward brigadier-general, who 
was defeated by Wayne at Stony Point. 

A very fine stately dwelling was erected in 1773, 
by John Lawrence, on the northeast corner of Sixth 
and Chestnut Streets, which was subsequently occu- 
pied first by Hon. Robert R. Livingston, and last by 
Peter S. Du Ponceau. 

John Cadwalader's house on the west side of Second 
Street, below Spruce, was one of the largest dwelling- 



houses in the city. It had extensive grounds and 
gardens extending to Third Street. Graydon relates 
that in the early part of the Eevolution the "Silk 
Stocking Company," so called, commanded by John 
Cadwalader, being about seventy strong, rendezvoused 
at his house, "where capacious demijohns of Madeira 
were constantly set out in the yard, where we formed 
for our refreshment before marching out to exercise. 
The ample fortune of Mr. Cadwalader had enabled 
him to fill his cellars with the choicest liquors ; and 
it must be admitted that he dealt them out with the 
most gentlemanly liberality." 

John Cadwalader was immensely wealthy, and kept 
a very large establishment. He was the only man in 
Philadelphia, in 1772, besides the Governor, Eichard 
Penn, who kept "all sorts" of carriages. 

Archibald McCall, probably about 1762-63, when 
he married Judith Kemble, built a fine house at the 
northeast corner of Second and Union Streets. He 
was the leading East India merchant of his day, and 
a citizen of great influence. 

In 1761, John Stamper, an English merchant, pur- 
chased from the proprietaries, Thomas and Eichard 
Penn, the whole front on Pine Street, from Second to 
Third, being four hundred and sixty feet in width by 
one hundred and two feet in depth, for and in con- 
sideration of eleven hundred pounds sterling, and a 
yearly quit-rent of five shillings. Mr. Stamper was 
a member of the Common Council and an alderman, 
and in 1750 mayor of the city. He resided on Second 
Street. He bought forty feet of ground south of the 
original grant from the Penns. This made his lot 
one hundred and forty-two feet deep, to an alley 
which was called after him, Stamper's Alley. On 
this large piece of ground he commenced making 
various improvements. On the Pine Street lot he 
erected, some time before the Eevolution, a fine 
three-story brick house, which was formerly No. 50, 
and which, in 1884, was No. 224. It was distinguished 
by its red- and blue-glazed brick, its ancient columnar 
doorway, and its low steps. The cornice and dormer- 
windows were fine specimens of old-fashioned wood- 
work. The interior of the house was finished, ac- 
cording to the taste of the ante-Eevolutionary times, 
with elaborate paneling, wainscoting, surbases, heavy 
doors, etc., which still remain. The stable and coach- 
house in Stamper's Alley are also still standing. 

At the southeast corner of Pine and Third Streets he 
built a castellated mansion for his son, Joseph Stam- 
per, on the occasion of the latter's marriage with 
Miss Sarah Maddox, granddaughter of Joshua Mad- 
dox, one of the justices of the province. This prop- 
erty was subsequently bought by Dr. Philip Sing 
Physicfe', who erected a row of houses on the site. 

John Stamper had two daughters ; one of these, 
Mary Stamper, married William Bingham, and was 
the mother of William Bingham, Jr., afterward sen- 
ator of the United States. The other daughter, Han- 
nah Stamper, married the Eev. Eobert Blackwell. 

The mansion on Pine Street, first described, passed 
into their possession and became their residence. Dr. 
Blackwell, on the occasion of the marriage of his 
only daughter, Eebecca Harrison Blackwell, with 
George Willing, built for her, on the west end of this 
lot, a fine house, which, in 1884, was No. 238 Pine 
Street. This house was one of the handsomest in the 
then new style, with chimneys against the sides, and 
folding doors between the parlors. In 1773, Dr. 
Blackwell built another house, corner of Pine and 
Second Streets. In this house, at the time of the 
Eevolution, boarded Elias Boudinot, LL.D., who was 
a member of Congress, and at one time presided over 
that body. He was also commissary-general of pris- 
oners during the Eevolutionary war, and director of 
the mint under President Washington. His gener- 
ous bequest of lands bordering on the Susquehanna 
Eiver to the city of Philadelphia, in trust for the 
purpose of supplying poor housekeepers with fuel, 
has placed his name among those of public benefac- 
tors never to be forgotten. 

The house erected by William Logan, the son of 
James Logan, at the northwest corner of Second 
Street and Lodge Alley (now Gothic Street), some 
time between 1750 and 1760, had interesting recollec- 
tions attached to it. At William Logan's death, in 
1772, he devised this property to his son Charles 
Logan. 1 It was to this house that John Smith, when 
he married William Logan's sister, Hannah, took his 
bride during the honeymoon. It was here, also, that 
David Franks, merchant, — a wealthy Hebrew con- 
verted to Christianity, — lived during the Eevolution 
with his daughter, Polly, a famous beauty and wit. 2 
In this house, it is said, Dr. James Eush was born in 
March, 1786. 

North of William Logan's house, and separated 
from it by a garden (long since obliterated and built 
upon), was a spacious mansion built in the best style 
by James Pemberton, merchant, the brother of Israel 
Pemberton. It was built some time before the Eevo- 
lution. Mr. Pemberton lived in it until his death. 
For many years the Lehigh Coal and Navigation 
Company have occupied this house as an office. 

Many old houses remain, whose appearance pro- 

1 Charles Logan, by deed executed in 1790, conveyed the house to 
James Smith. After James Logan, the younger, Bold the old home- 
stead to the Bank of Pennsylvania, he removed to the house formerly 
his brother's, which he bought of Smith in 1798. It was conveyed" by 
James Logan to Joshua Fisher in 1805. The executors of the latter, 
after his death, sold this house to William Lehman, William Smith, and 
Samuel Smith, copartners as druggists, who changed it into a store. It 
was occupied for that purpose for many years by Lehman & Smiths, 
William Lehman, A. S. & B. Roberts, and others. The house is still 
standing, so changed by business alterations and abused by the progress 
of time that few will suppose, from its present appearance, that it ever 
could have been the abode of wealth, taste, and influence.— WestcoWi 
History of Philadelphia. 

s Another daughter married one of the Hamiltons of The Wood- 
lands. Franks was commissary of British prisoners during the early 
part of the Revolutionary war, but was suspected of secretly leaning to 
the British cause, was deprived of his office in 1778, and was ordered, in 
1780, to depart from the State.— Ibid. 



claims them of ante- Revolution construction. Some 
have their story well known by the descendants of 
the old Philadelphians. Others are a puzzle ; their 
former tenants have passed away from the earth, and 
their very origin is a mystery. 

About 1767 it was the fashion for ladies to wear 
their hair hanging loose about the head, and espe- 
cially over the forehead, much in the hideous style 
which has prevailed since a few years past under the 
name of "bangs.'' This fashion was the occasion of 
an epigrammatic quarrel in the columns of a New 
York paper. A cynical bachelor made bold to write 
as follows : 

"With hair so long, so lank, so sleek, 
Which not a comh composes, 
Why do you hide your brow and cheek 

And hardly spare your noses? 
Say, ye, iu whom each worth appears 

Adorned hy all the graces, 
What makes you thus, my pretty dears. 
Ashamed to show your faces!" 

" A Miss" promptly answered in the next issue of 
the paper, — 

"Presumptuous man, to Blander prone I 

Whose verse thy name disgraces ; 
What Demon whispered we were grown 

Asliamed to show our Faces? 
In perfect pity to mankind 

We veiled us for a season ; 
Unmask, my Girls! he'll quickly find 

That PUjj was the Reason." 

" A Boy" (he must have been an old one) dared to 
reply to the Miss, — 

" The veteran Hunks all covered with scars, 
Long battered and wounded in Venus 1 wars, 
When her charms proved deficient to win her a lover, 
Her — conscience — then bids the good dame to give over, 
So our Cbloes, with foreheads too low or too high. 
Or covered with Wrinkles that tell something nigh, 
Well knowing the consequence if they reveal them, 
The good-natured Creatures, — in Pity conceal them." 

The "Boy" had the last word, but the ladies con- 
tinued to consult their own taste or convenience, in 
New York as well as in Philadelphia. No argument 
could avail with the goddess Fashion. 

The practice of importing "indented servants" 
continued in force, and although we find in the 
newspapers of the time (1768-69) communications 
attacking and defending the enslaving of negroes, 
there seems to have been no objection to reducing 
white men to temporary slavery. Such advertise- 
ments as the following were not uncommon: "Just 
imported in the Brigantine . . . from Bristol a 
parcel of healthy, likely men and women, indented 
servants, among which are Blacksmiths, Cutlers, 
House-carpenters, Painters and Glaziers, Bakers, 
Turners, Husbandmen, and Labourers." This was 
no longer the scum of the streets and jails of Lon- 
don shipped to America by the authorities as a safe 
means of riddance. Here we have honest artisans 

selling themselves voluntarily into servitude in order 
to get to the new land of promise. What a sad com- 
ment on the condition of the working-classes in Eng- 
land ! These poor fellows could be transferred by 
one master to another, and sold like common goods 
or chattel, until the term of their indentures had ex- 
pired. But there were cases when the master, not 
the servant, deserved sympathy. The thieves and 
rascals of every grade, who came over under com- 
pulsion, or animated by the hope that they would 
find in Philadelphia a new field for their nefarious 
practices, gave no end of trouble to the unfortunate 
citizen who had invested his money in them ; they 
were continually running away, and they generally 
carried off all they could lay their hands on. One 
fellow is advertised as runaway for the seventeenth 
time. A remarkable fact is that the negro slaves did 
not run away. Another, resulting from the perusal 
of hundreds of advertisements, is that nine-tenths of 
the runaway servants are described as being dis- 
figured by the smallpox, which gives a faint idea 
of the ravages made by that dread disease before 
Jenner discovered vaccination. 

All runaways were not criminals, however; some, 
probably, found servitude more irksome and unbear- 
able than they had imagined, and impelled by a mad 
desire for liberty, made their escape and became 
liable to punishment for breaking their indentures. 
Of this class, we will charitably suppose, was the 
unfortunate "schoolmaster" (?), William Fetherson 
by name, who ran away from some place in Mary- 
land, and was believed to have gone to Philadelphia. 
The description of this " schoolmaster abroad" is a 
picture in itself. He had on an old blue broadcloth 
coat and vest with yellow buttons, leather breeches, 
half-worn, with several patches above the knees, a 
white sheeting-linen shirt, and an old black silk 
handkerchief round his neck, yarn stockings, stout 
leather shoes, a half-worn castor hat, and a great-coat 
scorched on the left side, with a slit on the right 

Advertising in verse was frequent at that time, and 
we cannot resist the temptation of giving here one of 
these quaint conceits. It appeared in the Pennsylva- 
nia Chronicle, and is somewhat prolix in style : 

"In Seventeen Hundred and Sixty-eight, 
Of a runaway servant I'll relate; 
In the Eighth month the twenty-first, 
Which is commonly called August. 
Ho from bis master ran away, 
It being on a Sabbath-day ; 
Some particulars I will relate: 
The first bis hair is dark and strait, 
His eyes and visage both are dark, 
And tho smallpox hath left bis mark ; 
He has a hobble in bis walk, 
And a mutter in his talk ; 
His ago I don't hardly know, 
But I believe near thirty-two ; 
An Englishman both born aud bred, 
And a barber is by trade ; 



William Tyler was his name, 

But I have heard he changed the same ; 

About five feet six inches high, 

And very apt to swear and lie. 

He has been much used to the sea, 

And had a shot went thro 1 one knee, 

Which makes that leg less thao the t'other; 

By his account when got that scar, 

He was on board a man-of-war; 

Tn divers places he has been, 

And great part of the world hath seen ; 

A scholar good, and for his clothes 

They homespun are, as I suppose ; 

An old felt hat and bearskin vest, 

With a striped ditto, when he's dreBt, 

And good strong shoes, with strings to tie, 

Which he is apt to tread awry ; 

He takes tobacco and strong drink, 

When he can get 'em, I do think. 

Whoever secures said servant-man, 

And sendB him home soon as they can, 

Shall receive the above reward, 

Which I will pay upon my word, 

With charges all that may accrue, 

Which shall be paid as soon as due ; 

In Bradford township where I dwell, 

And so my name I think to tell, 

Therefore in print I'll let it stand, 

Which you may see at your right hand. 

"John Townbend." 

Old advertisements are sometimes very amusing, 
but they are oftener positively useful as furnishing 
the most certain data about events. They are more 
precise even than personal recollections. Mr. Wat- 
son, in his "Annals of Philadelphia," speaks of Dr. Le 
Mayeur, dentist, who proposed, in 1784, to transplant 
teeth, and remarks, " This was quite a novelty in 
Philadelphia, the present care of the teeth was ill 
understood then. He had, however, great success in 
Philadelphia, and went off with a great deal of our 
patricians' money. Several respectable ladies had 
them implanted. I remember some curious anecdotes 
of some cases. One of the Meschianza belles had such 
teeth. They were, in some cases, two months before 
they could eat with them. . . . Dr. Baker, who 
preceded Le Mayeur, was the first person ever known 
as a dentist in Philadelphia." We cannot say how 
long before Le Mayeur Dr. Baker practiced, but in- 
serting false teeth could not have been so great a 
novelty in 1784, since, in 1769, "Mr. Hamilton, sur- 
geon-dentist and operator for the teeth from London," 
announced that he " displaces all superfluous teeth and 
stumps with the greatest ease and safety, and makes 
and sets in artificial teeth from one single tooth to a 
whole set, in so nice a manner that they cannot be 
distinguished from natural; therefore, those ladies 
and gentlemen who have had the misfortune of losing 
their teeth, have now an opportunity of having nat- 
ural or artificial put iu with dispatch and secrecy, 
and in such a manner as to be of real use, ornament, 
and service for many years, without giving the least 
pain to the patient." 

In 17/68-69 several firms advertise tooth-brushes 
and complete sets of instruments for cleaning the 
teeth. In fact articles for the toilet for both sexes, 

fancy articles, carved ivories, and all those expensive, 
trifles invented by the ingenuity of the London and 
Paris artisans to tempt the wealthy, could be found 
in as great variety then as they may be now in our 
most fashionable stores. As much may be said of 
dress-goods of every kind. A few of the goods with 
strange, puzzling names still remained on the list, 
but we feel more at home when we read of the 
Mechlin and Brussels laces, gauzes, cambrics, lawns, 
mulmuls, jaconets, scarfs, trimmings, fringes, gimps, 
ribbons, and the usual variety of fans, gloves, and 
mitts for sale by the leading " milliners" of that time, 
Mrs. Symonds, in Chestnut Street, and Mrs. Ann 
Pearson, in Second Street. We learn from the ad- 
vertisements of those ladies that ladies' satin riding- 
hats, with feathers or gold and silver bands and 
buttons, were fashionable; also stomachers, with 
Italian and French breast-flowers. We glean the 
information that the ladies wore rich shades or cloaks 
of all colors, stuff shoes, and toed and silk-tied clogs 
for wet weather, and we make the astounding dis- 
covery that the " chip" hats and bonnets of our day 
were worn on the streets of Philadelphia in 1768. 
Gentlemen could buy at the milliner's silk gloves, 
velvet morning-caps, and silk and satin bags for their 
" queues." 

Louis Duchateau, the French peruke-maker and 
hair-cutter, at Mr. Lortie's, in Third Street, informs 
the ladies that "he makes different sorts of hand- 
soatefrizets, which imitate nature and may be set on 
with very little trouble;" while Mrs. Holliday, wife 
of Joseph Holliday, " Taylor, from London," in Arch 
Street, offers them her " new-invented curious com- 
pound, which will, in half a minute, take out by the 
roots the hair which grows too low on the forehead, 
etc., or round the mouth ; it forms the eyebrows that 
are too large into a curious arch." This compound 
is perfectly " innocent," and " may be used on chil- 
dren under twenty months old." 

Broadcloths were to be had in such variety of col- 
ors as to please the most fastidious taste, — scarlet, 
crimson, blue, green, drab, black, white, buff, brown, 
light colored, and rose colored. Francis Hopkinson, 
on Walnut Street, kept a fine stock of them and of cas- 
simeres, "a new-invented manufacture for summer." 
Roger Bowman, on Second Street, had a fine assort- 
ment of these cloths. He also sold books. Very 
few merchants could confine themselves to one spe- 
cialty. Thus, one would see, in the same store, dolls, 
cutlery, gunpowder and snuff, looking-glasses and 
gloves, sugars, claret, and brocaded silks. The mer- 
chant dealt especially in one leading article, and this 
designated his business; thus, a dry-goods merchant 
might have for sale a consignment of wines, and a 
hardware merchant one of laces and ribbons. The 
millinery and retail dry-goods stores where the ladies 
dealt had less of this general assortment system, yet 
there was scarcely a store in another line that did not 
have dry-goods of some kind for sale. For their silks 



and velvets, their hats and cloaks and fans, they went 
to one or two well-known establishments ; but for 
cottons and calicoes, which were getting to be quite 
common, and for chintz, they could go into almost 
any retail store. 1 

When their dresses got soiled or faded, and economy 
forbade buying another, Mathews & Perrin, the Lon- 
don dyers and scourers, " cleaned, dyed, and dressed 

1 Here is a list, as complete as it could be compiled, of the firms doing 
business in Philadelphia on the 1st of January, 1770. Dry goods, etc., — 
Philip Benezet, corner of Market and Third Streets; Roger Bowman, 
Second Street; Francis Hopkinson, Walnut Street, between Fourth and 
Fifth Streets; Westmore <fc Batchelor, Second Street, above Market; 
John Kaighu, same block ; Alexander Bartram, sign of the naked boy 
(specialty, hosiery and broadcloths) ; Joseph Carson, Second Street ; 
Daniel and John Benezet, and Thomas Bartow, corner of Arch and 
Second Streets; Williams & Eldridge, Front Street; Cadwallader and 
Samuel 0. Morris (also large stock of jewelry), Chestnut Street; Peter 
Wikoff, Front Street; John Fullerton, Chestnut Street; William Bell, 
corner Chestnut and Second Streets ; David Sproat & Co., Front Street; 
William Adcock, Second Street ; Semple & Buchanan, Front Street ; 
Samuel Smith, Water Street, above Arch; James Rose, Second Street; 
Lewis Nicola, Market Street. East India goods, etc., — Jumes Budden, 
Front Street; Samuel Pleasants, Water Street; John Willday, Second 
Street ; Abraham Usher, Front Street ; Gibson & Asbeton, Market Street ; 
Benjamin Rawle, Water Street ; Stacy Hepburn, Water Street ; Joseph 
and George A. Morris ; Stephen Collins, Second Streat; James Gordon, 
Third Street; David Derhler, Market Street; Robert Strettel Jones, 
Arch Street ; John and Clement Biddle, Market Street; Randle Mitchell, 
Water Street; Williams & Taylor, Second Street; Curtis Clay, Water 
Street; Mifilin & Dean, Front Street. Groceries, etc., — Noave & Har- 
mao, Second Street; Charles Wharton, near Drawbridge; Isaac Gray, 
Chestnut Street; "William Richards, Water Street; Samuel Garrignes, 
corner Second and Walnut Streets; Robert Levers, Chestnut Street; 
Benjamin Gibbs, Front Street; Hubley & Graff, Front Street; Henry 
Barnhold, Second Street; Benedict Dorsey, Third Street; Baldwin & 
Gilbert, Front Street; John Roman, Market Street. Drugs, etc., — 
Christophers & Charles Marshall, Chestnut Street; Robert Bass, Market 
Street; Richard Tidmarsh, Second Street; Nathaniel and John Tweedy, 
Market Street; Samuel Dumeld, Second Street; John Day, Second 
Street; Duffield & Delaney, corner Second and Walnut Streets. Hard- 
ware, chinaware, etc., — Benjamin Davis, Third Street; Kearney & Gil- 
bert, Water Street ; John and Peter Chevalier, Water Street ; Jonathan 
Zane, Second Street; James Cooke, Race Street; Samuel Sansom, Jr., 
Front Street; Howard & Bartram, Front Street; Timothy Barret, Arch 
Street. Hay, seeds, etc., — Daniel Grant and William Ball, both on Mar- 
ket Street; John Lownes, Third Street. Sugars and molasses, — Edward 
Pennington, Market Street; Thomas West, Market Street; John W. 
Hoffman, Second Street; Josiah HeweB, Chestnut Street; Samuel & 
Charles Massey, Water Street; Harris Drayton, Water Street. WineB, 
etc.,— Hollingsworlh & Rudolph, below the Drawbridge; James Emer- 
son, Market Street; William Forbes, Water Street. Boulting cloth, — 
Robert & Nathaniel Lewis, near the Drawbridge; Daniel Williams, 
Chestnut Street. Brewery, — Anthony Morris, Jr. Bottled beer, etc., — 
Timothy Marlack, Fourth Street. Ship chandlers, — Thomas Clifford & 
Son. Mast-maker, — Jonathan Hanson, near Penrose's wharf. Sail- 
maker, — J. W. Annis, Joshua Fisher's wharf. Sickles and scythes, — 
W. Dawson, Market Street ; James Hendricks, Market Street. Sail- 
cloth, etc., — John Briuglmrst, Walnut Street. Iron castings, — Michael 
HillcgaB. Manufacturers of chocolate, — Mrs. Crathorne, in Letitia 
Court, and Benjamin Jackson. Jewelers, — William Bartram, Front 
Street ; John Baily, comer Front and Chestnut. Haberdashery and mil- 
linery,— E. White, Chestnut Street. Staymaker, — Fred Oblowskii, Race 
Street. Shoemakers' tools and goods, — Robert Loosely, Walnut Street. 
Locksmith and bell-hanger, — Alexander Smith, Second Street. Turner 
and joiner, — John Elmslee, Second Street. Eugraver on metals, — James 
Smithers, Third Street. Vendue Btores, — James Kinnear, Front Street ; 
Footman & Jeyes, Second Street; Joseph Hart, Soufhwark. Brush- 
makers, — Elliot & Stapleton, Second Street. Saddlery, — William Todd, 
Arch Street. Coals, — John Flanagan. Carver and gilder, — James Rey- 
nolds. Assorted merchandise, — John Elliott, Walnut Street; Joseph 
Wood, Market Street; John Smith, Second Street ; William Craig, Second 

all manner of silks and velvets," they scoured rich 
brocades and beautified the colors to look as well as 
new. They also cleaned and dyed scarlet cloaks and 
"all manner of men's cloaths." 

There were several bookstores with shelves well 
filled with the works of the best authors. John 
Sparhawk & Thomas Anderson, who kept the Lon- 
don Bookstore, on Market Street, near the London 
Coffee-House, had a very large stock of books, besides 
fancy stationery and mathematical instruments ; so 
had Samuel Taylor, the stationer and bookbinder, at 
the corner of Market and Water Streets, but many 
people preferred going to Robert Bell, bookseller and 
auctioneer, at the sign of the Sugar Loaf, Market 
Street near the river, for at his vendue "the intrinsic 
merit and excellence of each book" was " rationally 
expatiated upon with truth and propriety ; also, the 
extrinsic or original value properly demonstrated for 
the satisfaction of seller and buyer." 

Here are the prices of a few books sold by Bell : 
" History of Rasselas," 2 vols, complete in one, bound 
and lettered, six shillings; the same in blue paper, 
four shillings. "The Traveller," to which are added 
"True Beauty" and the " Adventures of Tom Dread- 
nought," one shilling. The additional volume to the 
" Letters of the Bight Honorable Lady Mary Wortley 
Montagu," with several poems, and her celebrated' 
" Defence of Marriage," and a frontispiece of the 
" Female Traveller," in the Turkish dress, two shil- 

Theodore Memminger, Second Street above Arch, 
kept a variety of musical instruments for sale. So 
did John Gualdo, in Front Street, near the Bank 
meeting-house. He had violins, German flutes, 
guitars, mandolins, spinets, clavichords, etc. He 
had, besides, in his house, a German gentleman who 
taught to play on the violin, violoncello, and French 
horn, and, " likewise, a servant boy who copied 
music, so that the customer who wished a par- 
ticular piece could have a copy made, without being 
compelled to buy the book in which it occurred." 
It seems that sheet music was not sold then. 

There were two dancing-masters, the Italian Tioli, 
and the Frenchman Foy. Both were also fencing- 
masters, and taught the use of the small-sword. A 
drawing-school, recently opened by J. Smithers, sev- 
eral grammar-schools, and a boarding-school, in Sec- 
ond Street, a little below Walnut Street, kept by Mrs. 
Sarah Wilson, " where young ladies may be educated 
in a genteel manner, and pains taken to teach them 
in regard to their behavior, on reasonable terms. 
They may be taught all sorts of fine work, viz., work- 
ing on catgut or flowering muslin, sattin stitch, 
queen stitch, ten stitch, cross-stitch, open work, 
crowning, embroidering curtains or chairs, writing, 
and cyphering. Likewise wax work in all its several 
branches, never, as yet, particularly taught here; 
also how to take profiles in wax, and to make wax 
flowers and fruit, and pin-baskets." Indeed, if some 



of our modern schools would substitute a few of good 
dame Wilson's ornamental branches for as many of 
the "scientific branches" they claim to teach, the 
modern young lady would not lose by the exchange. 

Paul Fooks, notary .and tabellion public for the 
French and Spanish languages, professor and sworn 
interpreter for the same, draws up writings, letters, 
powers of attorney, contracts, and accounts, agreeable 
to the forms and usages of those respective countries; 
but modest Elizabeth Murphy simply announces her- 
self as a French teacher, and proposes to give lessons 
from seven to nine in the morning, so as to not inter- 
fere with the children going to school. 

The amusements offered to the people, in addition 
to Hallam's American Theatre, which gave regular 
performances, were frequent displays of fire-work3 
and several shows, among others the following: 

In February, 1768, a view of Jerusalem was exhib- 
ited at the sign of the Buck, on Second Street. The 
advertisement says, " It is an artful piece of statuary, 
representing the city of Jerusalem, the temple of 
Solomon, his royal throne, all the noted houses, hills, 
and towers ; likewise the sufferings of our Saviour, 
from the garden of Gethsemane to the hill of Gol- 
gotha, all which is exhibited in the most natural man- 
ner." The price of admission to this " moral show" 
was one shilling for grown persons and sixpence for 

In the same year, on Third Street, opposite Mr. 
Pemberton's garden, there was a wax-work exhibition 
representing "the judgment of Paris on Mount Ida, 
when he assigned the golden apple to Venus. 
Tickets, Is., children, 6tf." 

Some months later Adam Crycer (from the king of 
Prussia's dominions in Germany) gave an exhibition 
of sleight-of-hand, at the sign of the Sorrel Horse, 
near the academy, to the great delight and awe of the 
boys, who looked upon him as a wizard. 

A "person who professes to teach how to read with 
propriety any author in the English language," an- 
nounced, in March, 1769, that he would read, at the 
academy, " Summer," a poem (by the author of " The 
Seasons") ; tickets, five shillings. He states that 
proposals would be shortly published for the reading 
of Milton's "Paradise Lost," by subscription. This 
pioneer of elocutionists did not receive proper en- 

A much larger number of people went to see the 
two white oxen exhibited by Edward Barret. They 
were " the largest and weightiest ever known in 
America, raised by Mr. Adam Guier, on Carpenter's 
Island, near the city, and by him sold to the present 
proprietor for one hundred pounds currency." 

Robert Tuckniss, on Market Street, gave his atten- 
tion to hat-making. Isaac Heston, on the same street, 
painted coaches, chairs, etc. There were two watch 
and clock-makers on Front Street; Burrows Down- 
dey's shop, above the draw-bridge, and James Wood, 
at the corner of Chestnut Street. The latter claimed 

to manufacture clocks " as good as those imported 
from England." Joseph Holliday, in Arch Street,, 
Richard Humphreys, in Third Street, near Market, 
and Thomas Howell, on Third Street, near Chestnut 
Street, did the tailoring business. William Eichards 
makes a specialty of breeches-making. 

John Robertson, a journeyman barber, of a poetic 
turn, gets off the following epigram : 

" Midas, we read, with wond'rous art of old, 
Whate'er he touch'd at once transform'd to gold ; 
This modern statesmen can reverse with ease, 
Touch them with gold, they'll change to what you please." 

Thomas Affleck was a cabinet-maker on Second 
Street, and Robert Moon, a chair- and cabinet-maker 
on Front Street. We have no description of the 
goods they manufactured. The public vendue o'f 
Capt. James Ross' effects (December, 1768) may 
give us some idea of the furniture in use in most of 
the houses of the medium class. There were sold 
mahogany and walnut bureaus, dining-, dressing-, 
and tea-tables, one eight-day clock, walnut, leather-, 
worsted -bottom, and Windsor chairs, feather-beds, 
bedsteads and bedstead -curtains, window-curtains, 
pictures, chest of drawers and floor-carpetings, also a 
very neat jack and sundry other kitchen furniture. 
Samuel Williams, joiner, on Fourth Street, sign of 
the Indian Queen, advertises a large quantity of 
joiner's stuff. He manufactures chests of drawers, 
desks, tables, chairs, bedsteads, sackings, cradles, and 
coffins. Joseph Wood, on Market Street, John Smith, 
on Second Street, and several others had for sale 
"Scotch carpetting," and Daniel Gibbs, on Front 
Street, sold " Wilton carpets." " Stamped paper-hang- 
ings for rooms" could be had at William Craig's, on 
Second Street, and James Reynolds, on Front Street, 
"imported paper-hangings with papier-maohA bor- 
ders." Ceiling ornaments and brackets, looking-glasses 
of all sizes, from a pocket-glass to the largest pier or 
mantel-glass, could be purchased at John Elliott's, 
while Alexander Bartram's stock of " china, delph and 
earthenware, stoneware and flint-glassware" was .of the 
largest. The housekeeper, therefore, found no diffi- 
culty in furnishing her home in the most elaborate 
or the simplest style according to her taste and 
means. House-rent was not very high. A two-story 
brick house and kitchen situate on the west side of 
Second Street, and well situated for a retail shop, 
rented for thirty-five pounds per annum ; a wooden 
dwelling-house on Elm Street, for six pounds per 
annum; a three-story brick house, with a lot extend- 
ing from Front Street to Water Street, between 
Spruce and Pine Streets, rented for forty pounds per 
annum. This was a comfortable house with conven- 
ient cellar kitchen, double closets to each room, 
and neatly plastered garrets. The staircases and the 
rooms on the first floor were neatly papered, from 
which we infer that paper-hangings, as well as car- 
pets, were getting into general use. From the de- 
scription of quite a number of town and country 



houses, it appears that the custom was to paper the 
lower or best rooms; where the parlor was in the 
second story, it and the staircase walls were papered. 

There was in those days a quaint custom of turning 
off marriage notices with some remark complimentary 
to the bride. It must have been embarrassing to the 
editor when he had a batch of these notices to write 
for the same issue of his paper. Here are a few 
specimens: Married, "Mr. Samuel Shaw, merchant, 
to Miss McCullough, daughter of the late Capt. Mc- 
Cullough ; and Mr. Thomas Patterson to Miss Brock- 
den, daughter of Charles Brockden, Esq., both amia- 
ble young ladies with handsome fortunes." " James 
Allen, Esq., to Miss Betsey Lawrence, only daughter 
of John Lawrence, Esq., late mayor of this city, a 
young lady of distinguished merit, beauty, and for- 
tune." "Mr. Levi Hollingsworth to Miss Hannah 
Paschall, daughter of Mr. Stephen Paschall, a young 
lady whose amiable disposition and eminent mental 
accomplishments adds dignity to her agreeable per- 
son." Rev. Mr. John Patterson was married to Miss 
Mercy Story, " a young lady with all the natural 
and acquired endowments which adorn the fair sex." 
A more simple announcement is made of an exchange 
of brides between Pennsylvania and Maryland, viz., 
" Joseph Shippen, Jr., secretary to his honor the 
Governor, was married in Philadelphia to Miss 
Jenny Galloway, of Maryland; and John Cadwala- 
der, merchant, of Philadelphia, was married in Mary- 
land to Miss Betsey Lloyd, daughter of the Hon. 
Edward Lloyd, of that province." The marriage of 
Mr. Bradford, printer, to Miss Polly Fisher, "an 
amiable young lady," brought out the following re- 
mark from the Pennsylvania Chronicle : " Mr. Brad- 
ford was genteelly dressed on the happy occasion in 
the manufactures of this country, an example well 
worthy of imitation.'' The same paper on another 
occasion says, " The following article of hymeneal 
intelligence came so well recommended that we cannot 
refuse it a place in the Chronicle. Last Wednesday 
evening was married Capt. Williams to Miss Esther 
Deers, a lady not more remarkable for the agreeable- 
ness of her person than her prudent conduct and 
amiable manners." Paid, 5s. 

Husbands sometimes advertised their wives, as 
they do now. Mrs. Catherine Redman would not 
submit tamely to such treatment from her " inhuman" 
husband. She replies, and informs the public that 
his charges against her proceed from the advice of 
his pretended friends, " added to the chimeras of his 
stupidly jealous and infatuated noddle I" 

Mary Nelson advertises a dishonest Irishman. She 
does not say in what relation the " villian" who stole 
her Pompadour chintz stood to her: 


" Lust Wednesday morn, at break of day, 
From Philadelphia run away, 
An Irishman, nam'd John McKeoghn, 
To fraud and imposition prone; 

About five feet five inches high, 
Can curse and swear as well as lie ; 
How old he is I can't engage, 
But forty-five is near his age; 
He came (as all reports agree) 
From Belfast town in sixty-three, 
On hoard the ' Culloden,' a ship 
Commanded by McLean that trip; 
Speaks like a Scotchmen, very broad, 
Ib round-shoulder'd, and meagre-jaw'd; 
Has thick, Bhort hair, of sandy hue, 
Breeches and hose of Maz'reen blue ; 
Of lightish cloth an outside vest, 
In which he commonly is dress'd ; 
Inside of which two more I've seen, 
One flannel, th'other coarse nankeen. 
He stole, and from my house convey'd, 
A man's blue coat, of broadcloth made; 
A gray preat coat, of bearskin Btuff 
(Nor had the villian yet enough); 
Some chintz (the ground was Pompadour) 
I lately purchas'd in a store, 
Besides a pair of blue-ribb'd hose, 
"Which he has on as I suppose. 
He oft in conversation chatters 
Of Scripture and religious matters. 
And fain would to the world impart 
That virtue lodges in his heart; 
But take the rogue from stem to stern, 
The hypocrite you'll soon discern, 
And find (tho' hiB deportment's civil) 
A saint without, within a devil, 
Whoe'er secures said John McKeoghn 
(Provided I should get my own) 
Shall have from me, in cash paid down, 
Five dollar-bills and half a crown." 

Political articles, written in a satirical vein, and 
lampoons on public men and matters, filled the few 
newspapers that existed in that time, with now and 
then some playful composition, in prose or verse, 
about love, manners, and fashions. Some of the poet- 
ical effusions are signed with a female nom de plume. 
Yet the ladies did not eschew politics, and the patri- 
otic muse more than once inspired them, as in the 
following lines, signed "A Female": 


" Addressed to the Daughters of Liberty in America, 1768. 

"Since the Men, from a Party, or Fear of a Frown, 
Are kept by a sugar plumb quietly down, 
Supinely aBleep, and depriv'd of their Sight, 
Are stripp'd of their Freedom and rnbb'd of their Right. 
If the Sons, Bo degenerate, the Blessings despise, 
Let the BatmliPrs of Liberty nobly arise ; 
And tho' we've no Voice but a Negative here, 
The Use of the Taxables, let us forbear. 
(Then Merchants import till your stores are all full, 
May the Buyers be lew, and your Traffick be dull.) 
Sland firmly resolv'd, and bid Orenvilte to 6ee, 
That rather I nan Freedom we part with our Tea; 
And well as we love the dear Draught when a-dry, 
Ab American Patriots our Tuste we deny. 
Pennsylvania's gay Meadows can richly afford, 
To pamper our Fancy or furnish our Board; 
Aurl Paper sufficient at Home still we have, 
To assure the wiseacre, we will not sign slave; 
When this Homnpun shall fail, to remonstrate our Grief, 
We can speak uioa voce, or scratch on a Leaf, 
Refuse all their Colours, tho 1 richest of Dye, 
When the juice of a Berry our Paint can supply, 
To humour our Fancy, and, as for our Houses, 
They'll do without Painting as well as our Spouses; 



While to keep out the cold of a keen Winter Morn, 

We can screen the northwest with a well-polished Horn; 

And trust me a woman, by honest Invention, 

Might give this State-Doctor a Dose of Prevention. 

Join mutual in this, and but small as it Beeras, 

We may jostle a Grenuille, and puzzle his Scheme ; 

But a Motive more worthy our Patriot- Pen, 

Thus acting, wo point out their Duty to Men; 

And should the Bound- Pensioners tell us to hush, 

We can throw back the satire by bidding them blush." 

The General Assembly of Virginia having closed 
an address to Lord Botetourt, Governor-General of 
the Dominion, with a prayer that the Supreme Being 
might inspire his lordship " with all wisdom," the 
following epigram appeared in a Philadelphia paper: 



"The Assembly, in devoutest strain, 
Ahk fur my Lord the gift of brain. 
Wisdom alone will hardly do, 
Next beg a little patience, too." 

In 1771 the wits in the public gazettes made fun of 
those effeminate individuals who used umbrellas to 
protect their heads against the fierce rays of a July 
sun. The umbrella, even as a shelter from rain, was 
a new article. They were heavy, clumsy things, made 
of oiled linen stretched over rattan sticks, in imitation 
of the " quittasol" (the predecessor of the parasol) 
which came from India and were made of oiled-silk in 
every variety of colors. The ladies used them to keep 
off the rain. The men were satisfied with the protec- 
tion of a heavy cloak or a sort of a cape (a French in- 
vention) called a roquelaure. Ministers and doctors, 
people who had to be out in all sorts of weather to 
call on the sick, had roquelaures of oiled linen. The 
usefulness of the umbrella during a shower was ac- 
knowledged, but its appearance in fair, sunshiny 
weather elicited the jeers of the populace and the 
mockery of men who should have been wiser. The 
doctors, however, recommended carrying an umbrella 
in summer as a safe protection against many diseases 
caused by exposure to the sun. Dr. Chancellor, Dr. 
Morgan, and Rev. Mr. DuchS bravely carried the ob- 
jectionable umbrella through the streets at mid-day, 
and the air of comfort with which they went uncon- 
cernedly about their business finally silenced the op- 
position. Many a wag found it convenient to shelter 
his "diminished head" under an umbrella, after ex- 
ercising his wit upon it. Umbrellas were first intro- 
duced in England in 1768; they were advertised for 
sale in Philadelphia in 1772, by William Barrel, on 
Market Street. 

Mrs. Esther Reed, who had but recently arrived in 
Philadelphia, gives her first impressions in a letter to 
her brother, 1 Mr. DeBerdc, dated Nov. 14, 1770. We 
quote as follows: " Miss Pearson is making a fortune 
by going to England and bringing back new fashions 

1 We are indebted for this and subsequent extracts to a very interest- 
ing " Life of Esther DeBerdt, afterward Esther Reed," printed for pri- 
vate circulation in 1853, without the author's name, but which is known 
to be by Mr. William B. Reed, of Philadelphia. 

in her way. Articles for gentlemen's use would an- 
swer as well. As to the common articles of wear, the 
country will soon be overstocked. Vast quantities of 
goods come already from New York and Maryland, 
and all the country people are spinning coarse linen, 
which they find their account in. . . . I am sure, after 
the first weeks, you would like this place very well. 
The city does not answer my expectations. The plan, 
undoubtedly, is remarkably good, but the houses are 
low, and in general paltry, in comparison of the ac- 
count I had heard. . . . We made our appearance on 
Thursday at the Assembly with Mrs. Foxcroft, and 
my ladyship opened the ball, much to the satisfaction 
of the company, as something new to criticise on. 
The belles of the city were there. In general, the 
ladies are pretty, but no beauties. They all stoop, 
like country girls. So much for this city." 

Two months later Mrs. Reed wrote: "We meet 
with much civility, but I can't say the place suits 
me very well. The people must either talk of their 
neighbors, of whom they know every particular, of 
what they both do and say, or else of marketing, two 
subjects I am very little acquainted with. This I 
only say to you, for we hardly dare tell one another 
our thoughts, lest it should spread and be told again 
all over the town." 

In 1772 the following was published as a descrip- 
tion of a beau in Philadelphia : 

"It has a vast quantity of hair on its head, which seems to stand on 
endand gives it the appearance of being frightened. That hair is loaded 
with powder and pomatum, all little enough, too, to keep any degree of 
life or heat in the few brains that are in small particles scattered about 
in the cavities of that soft Ekull it covers. The rest of it chiefly consists 
of French silk, gold lace, fringe, silk stockings, a hat and feather, and 
sometimes a cockade, and then it is quite irresistible. White hauds, a. 
diamond ring, a snuff-box, a scented handkerchief, and a cane. Its em- 
ployment is to present that snuffbox, to wield that cane, to show its 
white teeth in a perpetual grin, to say Boft things in every sense of the 
word to ladies, to follow them everywhere like their shadow, and to 
fetch and carry like a spaniel." 

The average citizen, however, was more modestly 
equipped. A recently-arrived Englishman is repre- 
sented as wearing his hair tied behind, well dressed 
in a brown broadcloth coat, lapelled jacket, and 
breeches of the same material, a castor hat, brown 
stockings and shoes, with pinchbeck buckles, while a 
teacher, who had got himself in some trouble with 
the sheriff, is described as clad in a blue coat, with 
a red collar and wristbands, sugar-loaf-shaped metal 
buttons, a blue surtout coat, Nivernais hat, and 
ruffled shirt ; he, also, wore his hair tied behind. 

The lady's hat for out-door wear was a very flat, 
round hat, worn so as to stand up perpendicularly on 
the right side of the head, or rather of the immense 
edifice of hair reared high over the head, the back 
and crown of which was protected by a sort of loose 
hood. A cloak of some bright color was worn in 
winter. Scarlet cloaks, when first imported, were 
great favorites with the leaders of fashion, but public 
taste condemned them and the mode did not last. We 
took our fashions from England, and the Philadel- 



phia ladies were probably careful to follow the direc- 
tions contained in a "London Pocket-Book" of the 
period, 1 viz., "Every lady who wishes to dress her 
hair with taste and elegance should first purchase an 
elastic cushion exactly fitted to the head. Then, 
having combed out her hair thoroughly, and properly 
thickened it with powder and pomatum, let her turn it 
over her cushion in the reigning model. Let her 
next divide the sides into divisions for curls, and 
adjust their number and size from the same models. 
If the hair be not of a sufficient length and thick- 
ness it will be necessary to procure an addition to it, 
which is always to be had ready-made and matched 
to every color." 

During the next ten years there were as many dif- 
ferent styles of dressing the hair. Curls, crisp or 
long, feathers, flowers and ribbons, powder and po- 
matum, each had their turn, or were combined into 
so many enormities that they aroused the poet's 
sarcasm, — 

11 Give Betsy a bushel of horsehair and wool, 

Of paste and pomatum a pound, 
Ten yards of gay ribbon to deck her sweet skull, 

And gauze to encompass it round. 
Her cap flies behind, for a yard at the least, 

And her curls meet just under her chin, 
And those curls are supported, to keep up the jest, 

By a hundred, instead of one pin." 

A custom prevailed at the funeral of young girls 
which has long since ceased to be : it was that the 
coffin should be carried to the grave by some of the 
most intimate companions of the dead girl. Miss 
Sarah Eve in her journal, July 12, 1773, has the fol- 
lowing entry: "In the evening B. Rush, P. Dunn, 
K. Vaughan and myself carried Mr. Ash's child to 
be buried; foolish custom for girls to prance it 
through the streets without hats or bonnets." 2 

Miss Sarah Eve, the daughter of Oswell Eve and 
Anne Moore, 8 was a highly accomplished young lady, 

i The Eighteenth Century, by Alexander Andrews. 

2 The Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography, from which we 
copy these extracts from the journal of Miss Sarah Eve, says in a note 
concerning this custom; "As late as Dec. 19, 1813, it appears to have 
undergone but little change from the time mentioned in the diary, as 
Miss Hannah M.Wharton recorded in her journal : 'We have had a 
melancholy occurrence in the circle of our acquaintance since I last 
wrote in the death, of the accomplished and amiable Fanny Durden. 
Six young ladies of her intimate acquaintance, of which I was one, 
were asked to be the pall-bearers. We were all dressed in white, with 
long white veils.* 

" The child whoBe funeral was mentioned in the text was Rebecca, 
second child of Col. James Ash. . . . Col. Ash was born in 1750, and 
died in 1830. He married three times, and had twenty-four children. 
His first wife, whom he married when he was quite young, was Sarah 
Hindi man." 

8 Sarah Eve was one of the surviving six of thirteen children. This 
gifted young lady died Dec. 4, 1774, aged twenty-four years. She had 
received a good education, and was familiar with the best poetical and 
prose writers in the English language. Her disposition was as amiable 
as her understanding was strong and her imagination brilliant. A 
member of the family wrote of her, " Her hair, though red, waB always 
fashionably dressed, and her appearance very stately. On one occasion, 
when a companion Haid she ' was too proud,' another answered, 'There 
is more humility under Sarah Eve's high head than under many «■ 
Quaker bonnet.' " 

with a quick and naturally observing mind. The 
following extracts from her journal give an insight 
of the social life in her time : 

"February 26th. As fine a day as in April. In the morning Dr. 
Shippen came to see us, What a pity it is that the doctor is bo fond of 
kissing; he really would be much more agreeable if he were less fond. 
One hates to he always kiBBed, especially as it is attended with so many 
inconveniences; it decomposes the economy of one's handkerchief, it dis- 
orders one'B high roll, and it ruffles the serenity of one'B countenance ; in 
Bbort, the doctor's, or a sociable kiss, is many times worse than a formal 
salute with bowing and curtseying, to ' this is Mr. Such-an-one, and 
this Miss What-do-you-call-her.* 'Tis true this confuses one no little, 
but one gets the better of that sooner than to readjust one's dress." 

In another entry she remarks playfully, "I never 
once thought of it before I heard Mrs. Clifford mention 
it, why such an exemplary man as Mr. Duche" should 
sit every day and have his hair curled and powdered 
by a barber. Since I have thought about it greatly, 
and would like to hear his sentiments on this subject. 
But, my dear ma'am, what would a parson be with- 
out powder f it is as necessary to him as to a soldier, for 
it gives a more significant shake to his head, and is 
as priming to his words and looks. As to having his 
hair curled, he perhaps thinks it of little or no con- 
sequence, since curled or uncurled locks will turn so 
gray, or perhaps he may look upon it as more humili- 
ating to wear his own hair than a wig, as then his 
head must serve as a block on which the barber must 
dress it." 

She goes with Maj. and Mrs. Hayes to visit a lady 
from"7*-en Town" who lodged at Dr. Duffield's, and the 
visit is an ovation for writing this graphic pen-picture 
of shallow fashionable life: "We went down to the 
doctor's where I was introduced to the lady, her name 

The Pennsylvania Magazine says of her family, " In 1745 Oswell Eve, 
the elder, was a sea-captain, commanding the ship * George,' and was 
so prosperous that, from 1756 to 1760, he was part owner in no less than 
twenty-five different vessels. During part of this time he was a shipping 
merchant of Philadelphia, and in 1766 was a lieutenant in Capt. Samuel 
Mifflin's company of Philadelphia Associators. In 1766 be became a 
memher of the Society for the Relief of the Poor, Aged, and Infirm 
Masters of Ships, their Widows and Children. 

" A daughter of Oswell Eve, Jr., writes that her grandfather ' lived in 
a large stone house in Philadelphia; the sons and daughters were edu- 
cated in Philadelphia, and my father was a classmate and associate of 
Bis. Bush, Shippen, and James. His father was the owner and captain 
of the British war-brig "The Roebuck;" my uncle, Joseph, had his 
father's commission in his possession. Ab soon as his eldest sons, John 
and Oswell, wore large enough, he took them to Bea with him, leaving 
the reB lof the family at a place near Philadelphia, where his wife and 
daughter lived until near the commencement of the war, in very com- 
fortable circumstances, seeing a great deal of company. It was then 
Dr. Rush became engaged to my aunt, but she died three weeks before 
the event was to take place.' 

"As will be seen by the journal, Captain Eve, having met with mis- 
fortunes in business, left his family, May 1, 1768, and with his sons, John 
and Oswell, went' to the West Indies, where he engaged in business, 
which was principally transacted at Montego Bay, Jamaica. After an 
absence of over five years he felt that his affairs would allow him to re- 
turn to his family, and it is while looking forward with pleasant ex- 
pectations for this event that the diary of his daughter closes." . . . " It 
is likely the house (occupied by Captain Eve's family) wan situated on 
the stream which supplied the Globe Mill atGermantownroadand Canal 
Street, the dam of which was west of the present line of Fifth Street 
above Thompson, a site now covered with houses, but until lately occu- 
pied by glue- factories and tan-yards, presenting a scene greatly different 
from that described in the journal as a place where wild flowers could 
be gathered." 

[From old ijriuts in retin-^lv.aiiu Historical Suciety 1 



is Brayen, her husband is a doctor and a man of for- 
tune. We found her agreeing with a man about 
framing a picture for her, how soon one may discover 
some people's predominant passions. I thought I 
had hers before the man left her, and by evening I 
was pretty sure of it. Though by appearance fond of 
show and gayety, if I mistake not, and I did not see 
her good man, she is mistress. She had just returned 
from buying wine for the doctor as he preferred her 
taste before his own. ' Your price rather, thought 
I, for peace sake poor man !' She put on her cloak 
and bonnet, and we went a shopping with her, she 
wanted a hundred things, she cheapened everything, 
and bought nothing! She offered ten pence a yard 
for trimming which the woman said cost her four- 
teen, and accordingly for everything she wanted. At 
one o'clock she left us to go home and dress as she 
was to dine with us. At half after two she came to 
us, and at three we sat down to dinner, for my part, 
at that time of day, I should have thought tea full as 
proper, my impolite appetite unaccustomed to be so 
served, had left me two hours before, so that I had 
little to do with the original intention of dining and 
a greater opportunity of observing (dare I call it the 
shallow elegance of my surroundings, and the more 
shallow compliments and conversation of the greater 
part of the company). ' Where, my dear Mrs. Hayes,' 
said the doctor'slady, ' did you get everything so much 
handsomer and so much finer than anybody else?' a 
proper stress to be laid on the word so. The other 
lady with pleasure sparkling in her eyes and a con- 
sciousness that the compliment was no more than 
her due, exclaimed she was very polite and very 
obliging, and in this entertaining manner we passed an 
hour and a half at the table. We drank tea at candle 
light, the silver candlesticks very handsome and much 
admired. As soon as possible I bade the company 
good-night, except Capt. Stainforth, who saw me safe 
to my brother's. I came home, thanking fate that I 
had so little to do with high life and its attendants.'' 

In another letter of Mrs. Reed's (Oct. 12, 1772), she 
mentions several articles of apparel which she desires 
her brother to send to her, as she cannot procure 
them easily in Philadelphia, viz., Black calma shoes, 
a dozen of eight-bowed cap wires, a quilted cap for 
her little girl, and a " quartered cap for her boy ; for 
herself, a half-dressed handkerchief or tippet, or what- 
ever is the fashion, made of thread lace; a handsome 
spring silk, fit for summer, and new fashion." In a 
subsequent letter, however, she countermands the 
order concerning the silk gown, as she finds she can 
have one made in Philadelphia. 

On the 20th she writes, " You will no doubt hear 
of the failure of a very considerable house in New 
York ; it seems to have been very unexpected, as they 
were in great credit. Many failures are expected 
here; the city is so much overstocked with goods that 
in many shops you may buy cheaper than in London, 
and the needy trader is constantly obliged for the 

sake of ready cash to send his goods (often bales un- 
opened) to vendue, where they sometimes sell under 
prime cost, which is productive of universal bad con- 
sequences." This repletion of the market was not to 
last, however. Yet another year or two and how dif- 
ferent the aspect of things will be ! The grievances 
of the colonies have become unbearable. The people 
of Boston have destroyed the cargoes of the tea-ships ; 
the Philadelphians, with that decorum and dislike of 
violence inherited from their Quaker ancestors, have 
compelled the vessels sent to their port to leave it 
without discharging their obnoxious cargo. Non-im- 
portation is resolved; the Revolution is commenced. 
The effect on society was to create division. We will 
not introduce the political history of Philadelphia in 
a chapter devoted exclusively to manners and cus- 
toms, but even these will show the divisions of par- 
ties. A lady's dress revealed at once the side taken 
by her family; the patriotic fair ones proclaiming 
their resolve to encourage home manufactures, while 
the wives and daughters of the men who doubted the 
wisdom of the Revolutionary measures recently 
adopted, clung to English fashions and English 
goods. Still, at this closing page of the ante-Revo- 
lutionary period, there was neither the folly and ex- 
travagance, nor the trials and sufferings which marked 
the great struggle. There was no scarcity of the 
good things of this world, and the delegates to the 
Congress held in 1774 had no cause to complain of 
the hospitality of the Philadelphians. When the 
delegates from Massachusetts reached Frankford, a 
number of gentlemen from Philadelphia, including 
Mifflin, McKean, and Rutledge, went out with car- 
riages, and, having cordially welcomed the delegates, 
brought them to the city. Here they were introduced 
to a number of other gentlemen, who vied with one an- 
other in paying them attention. During their stay it 
was a continual round of invitations to dinner par- 
ties, receptions, etc. One of the delegates — John 
Adams — kept a diary, and in this he noted with much 
exactness the many invitations he had accepted, even 
to putting down the bill of fare. A few extracts from 
these curious memoranda will show how well the 
wealthy Philadelphians lived : 

" September. — Went with William Barrell to his store, where we drank 

punch and ate dried Bmoked sprats with him. 
"Dinner with Joseph Reed. An elegant supper. We drank senti- 
ments until eleven o'clock. Lee had dined with Dickinson, and drank 

Burgundy all the afternoon. • 
" Dinner at Mrs. Fisher's : Ducks, hams, chickens, beef-pies, tarts, 

creams, custards, jellies, fools' trifles, floating islands, beer, porter, wine, 

punch, and a long, etc. 
"At Mr. Powell's: Curds and cream, sweet-meats of various sorts, 

twenty sorts of tarts, fools' trifles, floating islands, whipped syllabubs 

Parmesan cheese, punch, wine, porter, beer, etc. 
"At Willing's: Turtle, and everything else. 
" At Dr. Cox's, Water Street : Claret, Madeira, Burgundy, pears and 

peaches. Breakfast: Buckwheat-cakes, muffins and toast. 
"Dinner at Chew's: Turtle, etc. ; sweetmeats, trifles, etc. Dessert: 

Raisins, almonds, pears, peaches, and Madeira (very fine)." 



Silas Deane, a New England delegate, was not so 
well pleased with our markets. He wrote as follows 
concerning them in 1774: 

" Their meat is brought in the neateBt order and appearance, and 
their mutton excels. But in the whole market there was nothing of 
the fiBh kind, and I scarcely Baw any fowls of any kind worth naming. 
Fruit of but few kinds, and those very inferior (watermelons excepted, 
which you may think ought to be good when I tell you I saw them sold 
for two shillings each). Among their roots and vegetables I saw none 
of the first quality, and none at all of several which we value. I Baw no 
celery, not a root; no kind* of salads, one basket of endive excepted ; 
no beans but what were fit to shell ; and the cucumbers offered for sale 
were older than we ever ate them. The roots and vegetables worth no- 
ticing are, cabbages and potatoes, good ; turnips, carrots, and radishes, 
as tough as a dry, sandy soil cun make them. But the red beets are 
good. . . . They expose horses, cattle, sheep, earthenware, stockings, 
etc , in the market with other things, so that they really have an assort- 
ment. But everything, without exception, is dearer than at New York. 
The common price of butter is sixteen pence per pound." 

Nor was he favorably impressed with the beauty of 
the Philadelphia ladies, if we judge from the follow- 
ing extract from a subsequent letter : 

"A brother delegate, remarkably fond of fine ladies, at a late fair, 
when the whole country was collected, asked me if I saw one pretty 
girl. I replied in the negative. He was then very free (as be was very 
well acquainted in New England, though not an inhabitant of it) in 
praise of your ladyships there, and taking a guinea out of his pocket, 
said, ' Deane, here is a vast crowd of gills; I will follow you, and the 
first that you shall say has a pretty face I will give the guinea to.' We 
strolled through the whole fair, and though I sincerely wanted him to 
lose the guinea, yet I could not in conscience say that I found one hand- 
some face. Fmm this judge of the general complexion of girls here." 1 

1 All strangers were not as fastidious as Mr. Deane. The Duke de 
Lauzun declared that " for beauty, grace, and intelligence'' he had never 
seen the superiors of the Philadelphia ladies. The Marquis de Chastel- 
lux has devoted many an enthusiastic page of his" Vuynge dans TAm6r- 
jque" to his fair Philadelphia acquaintances. The Abb6 Robin, a chap- 
lain in Rocham beau's army, says, "They are tall and well-proporiioned, 
their features are generally regular, their complexion is very fair and 
without colour, they have less ease and grace but a more noble bearing 
than French ladies. Indeed, I have noticed in many of them something 
of the loftiness which characterizes some of the chef d'eenvres of the old 
artists." The Chevalier de Beaujour, after describing the men, remarks, 
" The women have more of that delicate beauty which belongs to their 
sex, and, in general, have finer features and more expression in their 
physiognomy. Their stuture is usually tall, and nearly all are possessed 
of a light and airy shape, the breast high, a fine head, and their colour 
of a dazzling whiteness. Let us imagine, under this brilliant form, the 
most modest demeanor, a chaste and virginal air, accompanied by those 
simple and unaffected graces which flow from artless nature, and we 
may have an idea of their style of beauty ; but this beauty passes and fades 
in a moment. At the age of twenty-five their form changes, and at thirty 
the whole of their charms have disappeared." This closing remark is 
applied to American women in general. 

But remarks still more gratifying than favorable comments on Amer- 
ican beauty were made by these foreigners. They describe society as it 
was in the infancy of the nation, and the high tribute which they pay 
to the social virtues of the women of America is the more precious be- 
cause it is still deserved, despite of the teachings of European "civiliza- 
tion." Marshal Count de Rochambeuu, in his "Memoirs on the War of 
the Revolution," remarks incidentally, " Young women are free till their 
marriage. . . . But when they have once entered the state of matrimony 
they give themselves up entirely to it, and you seldom see, particularly 
in the rural districts, a woman of loose manners." 

The Duke de la Rochefoncauld-Liancourt (" Voyage dans les fStatB- 
Unis") comments favorably on the freedom, so rarely abused, allowed to 
young American girls. He says of the married women, " In the coun- 
try she is, as in Europe, a necessary friend to the management of domes- 
tic affairs, — she is the soul of the family. In town she is so too. She is 
an indispensable resource for domestic affairs, while her husband is en- 
gaged in his own affairs, as every one is in America. She is an assidu- 
ous companion, and a society ever ready to be found in a country where 

"It may be noticed/' says Mr. Westcott in his 
" History of Philadelphia," " that the fairs were held 
in the public market-places, and were most generally 
attended by the country people, most of whom at that 
time were used to hard work, frequently in the fields, 
and were without the advantages incident to luxury 
and leisure and refinement, which give to women of 
taste opportunities to display their personal charms 
to the best advantage. The apology for Mr. Deane is 
that he did not get into the best society, which at that 
time was affected generally in favor of the crown." 

The troublous times have come. The battle of 
Lexington has been fought, and independence has 
become a fact. Washington, appointed commander- 
in-chief in June, 1775, has started for Boston, where 
the Continental army is organizing; a number of 
Philadelphians accompany him. In Philadelphia 
everything bears a warlike aspect. We hear no more 
of races, of cock-fighting,— the favorite but cruel 
amusement hitherto so much in vogue, — no more 
bull-baiting or bear-baiting ; the men have something 
else to think of, they discuss the war news, they pre- 
pare for war. Mrs. Keed, whose husband is appointed 
lieutenant-colonel of one of the three battalions of 
Pennsylvania, writes, "Two thousand men in the 
field, all in uniform, make a very military appear- 
ance. A regiment of men, whom they call riflemen, 
dress themselves like Indians, and make a very for- 
midable show." Even the ladies have lost all interest 
in their wonted amusements, the ball-room is forsaken, 
dress affords no pleasure; war is the universal theme, 
the all-engrossing subject. 

The newspapers belonging to the party of armed 
resistance made use of various devices illustrative of 
union, the essential element of success. The dis- 
jointed or dissevered snake was a favorite device at the 
time of the Stamp Act excitement, and when, in 1774, 
the colonists had resolved to take the important step 
for the promotion of union, namely, the assembling 
of a Continental Congress of delegates, that device 
was revived, with some modifications. The illustra- 
tion of a disjointed snake, each part representing a 
colony, with the initials thereof, 2 first appeared in 
the heading of the Pennsylvania Journal, where it 
remained for about a year, or until the colonies were 
fairly united, on the meeting of the Second Conti- 
nental Congress in May, 1775. The device excited 
the ire and disgust of the loyalists, and the Tory 
writers spoke in harsh terms of it. A writer in Riv- 
ington's Royal Gazette, in New York, called it "a scan- 
dalous and saucy reflection ;'' to which a correspond- 
ent of the Journal, signing himself " New Jersey," 
replied as follows: 

there are no other but that of the family, and where the children soon 
quit their paternal abode." 

In fact, it is a thought of which we should he proud, whatever may 
have been the criticisms, deserved or unjust, of foreigners upon Ameri- 
can institutions and custoniB, the manners of American women have 
ever been the subject of their praiBe. 

2 This illustration is reproduced on page 303, vol. i. of this work. 



" That Now England's abused, and by sons of perdition, 1 
Ib granted without either prayer or petition ; 
And that 'tis 'a scandalous saucy reflection,' 
That ' merits the soundest, severest correction,' 
Is readily granted. ' How came it to pass?' 
Because she is pester'd by snakes in the grass, 
Who by lying and cringing, and such like pretensions, 
Get places once honored, disgraced by pensions. 
And you, Mr. Pensioner, instead of repentance 
(If I don't mistake you) have wrote your own sentence, 
For by such snakes as this New England's abused, 
And the ' head of the serpents,' you know, mnst ' be bruised. 1 " 

H. Clay Lukens, of Germantown, sent to the Rec- 
ord " the following description of the curious banner 
originally displayed by the American colonies after 
the commencement of active hostilities against Great 
Britain." It is taken from the London Morning 
Chronicle for July 25, 1776 : 

" The colors of the American flag have a snake with thirteen rattles, 
the fourteenth budding,^ described in the attitude of going to strike, 
with the motto, 'Don't tread on me!' It is a rule in heraldry that 
the worthy properties of the animal, in the crest borne, shall be consid- 
ered, and the base ones cannot be intended. The ancients accounted a 
snake or serpent an emblem of wisdom, and, in certain attitudes, of 
endless duration. The rattlesnake is properly an emblem of America, 
as this animal is found in no other part of the world. The eye of this 
creature excels in brightness most of any other animal. She has no 
eyelids, and is, therefore, an emblem of vigilance. She never begins an 
attack, nor ever surrenders ; she is, therefore, an emblem of magnanim- 
ity and true courage. When injured, or in danger of being injured, 
she never wounds until she has given notice to her enemies of their 
danger. No other of her kind shows such generosity. "When undis- 
turbed and in peace, she does not appear to be furnished with any 
weapons of any kind. They are latent in the roof of her mouth, and 
even when extended for her defense, appear to those who are not ac- 
quainted with her to be weak and contemptible, yet her wounds, how- 
ever small, are decisive and fatal. She is solitary, and associates with 
her kind only when it is necessary for their preservation. Her poison 
is at once the necessary means of digesting her food and certain de- 
struction to her enemies. The power of fascination, attributed to her 
by a generous construction, resembles America. Those who look stead- 
ily on her are delighted and involuntarily advance toward her, and, 
having once approached, never leave her. She is frequently found with 
thirteen rattles, and they increase yearly. She is beautiful in youth, 
and her beauty increases with her age. Her tongue is blue, and forked 
as lightning." 

The Declaration of Independence had been pro- 
claimed, and the United States of America had come 
into existence. Philadelphia, being the seat of govern- 
ment, was soon filled with strangers, delegates to the 
Congress and their families, patriots and politicians 
from all parts of the land, military men, adventurers, 
and speculators from every part of the world. The 
introduction of these new elements wrought a great 
change in the hitherto quiet community : hazardous 
speculations took the place of steady business habits, 
and a mad thirst for pleasure and excitement pervaded 
society. In the winter of 1776-77, Richard Henry 
Lee wrote of Philadelphia that it was an " attractive 
scene of debauch and amusement ;" and James Lovell 
complained to Washington that he found it " a place 
of crucifying expenses." Judge Edward Shippen, 
writing to his father in January, 1777, remarks, " How 
long matters may thus continue cannot be known, yet 

1 New England was then suffering from the effect of the Boston Port 

2 This represented Vermont. 

another summer must necessarily show us our fate. 
If the war should continue longer than that, we are 
all ruined as to our estates, whatever maybe the state 
of our liberties. The scarcity and advanced price of 
every necessary of life makes it extremely difficult 
for those who have large families, and no share in the 
present measures, to carry them through, and nothing 
but the strictest frugality will enable us to do it." 

While many patriotic ladies persisted in giving up 
finery and frivolous amusements, and turned all their 
energies to helping and encouraging their husbands 
and brothers, fashion did not lose its sway, and dress 
was ruinous, owing to the scarcity of goods and of 
money. The dress for gentlemen in good society at 
the beginning of the Revolutionary war is thus de- 
scribed : 

"The hair wits powdered and tied in a long queue; a plaited white 
stock; and shirt ruffled at the boBom and over the hand, and fastened at 
the wrists with gold sleeve-buttons ; a peach-bloom coat, with white 
buttons, lined witli white silk, and standing off at the skirts witli buck- 
ram; a figured silk vest, divided so that the pockets extended on the 
thighs ; black Bilk small-clothes, with large gold or silver knee-buckles ; 
cotton or silk stockings ; large shoes with short quarters, aud buckles to 

It is related in the life of Samuel Adams that, upon 
his being chosen in 1774 to attend the Congress in 
Philadelphia, his friends fitted him out with a full 
suit of clothes, as follows: two pairs of shoes of the 
best style, a set of silver shoe-buckles, a set of gold 
knee-buckles, a set of gold sleeve-buttons, an elegant 
cocked hat, a gold-headed cane, a red cloak, and a 
number of minor articles of wearing apparel. The 
sleeve-buttons and cane had upon them the device of 
a liberty cap. 

Such costumes were necessarily very expensive. 
Still more so was the uniform and equipment of an 
officer in the army. To obtain for the Continental 
troops that uniformity of dress which is necessary in 
order to distinguish an army from a mob of armed 
men, was a problem difficult to solve with the scant 
means at command. Still it was done, in a manner, 
with economy. 

The first troops raised in Pennsylvania being associ- 
ators aud militia organizations, a cheap and effective 
distinction was the hunting-shirt. This garment was 
made of various colors, principally of brown, green, 
and yellow, and some black. The riflemen clung to 
this style of uniform longer than did other arms of 
the service. The infantry were soon clad in uniforms 
resembling the British fashions, except in colors. 
The prevailing color of the Pennsylvania line was 
brown, with facings of buff, blue, green, or red. 
Blue coats were used by some regiments and bat- 
talions. To the artillery — as soon as regular artillery 
regiments were formed — was assigned the color of 
black, with red facings. 

The Philadelphia Troop of Light Horse, associated 
Nov. 17, 1774, adopted the following uniform: a 
dark-brown short coat, faced and lined with white, 
white vest and breeches, high-top boots, round black 



hat, bound with silver cord, a buck's tail, housings 
brown, edged with white, and the letters " L. H." 
worked od them. Arras : a carbine, a pair of pistols 
and holsters, with flounces of brown cloth trimmed 
with white, a horseman's sword, and white belts for 
the sword and carbine. 

On the 16th of January the body of the brave 
Gen. Hugh Mercer was escorted, with all the honors 
of war, to its last resting-place in Christ church- 
yard. He was a Scotchman by birth, and had fought 
in the battle of Culloden with Charles Stuart. Mak- 
ing his escape after that disastrous defeat, he had 
fled to America and had settled in the province of 
Pennsylvania. But the brave soldier did not find 
peace — if indeed he sought it — in his new home. 
In 1755 he was a captain in the provincial forces 
sent against the Indians. He was wounded and left 
for dead on the battle-field. Having, by good for- 
tune, escaped the seal ping-knife of the savage, he 
made his way to Fort Cumberland, after wandering 
for some weeks through the woods, with no other food 
than berries and nuts. In 1758 he was made a lieu- 
tenant-colonel, and placed in command of Fort Du 
Quesne by Col. Washington. Upon the organization 
of the Continental army, we find the gallant Mercer 
serving with the rank of general under his old chief. 
Mortally wounded at Princeton, where he fought 
on foot, after his horse had been shot under him, 
and refusing to surrender when pressed by a whole 
detachment, he was beaten down with the butt end of 
their muskets and received a fatal bayonet thrust, 
which caused his death. 

The body of the gallant Philadelphian, Capt. Wil- 
liam Shippen, also killed in the battle of Princeton, 
was likewise buried with military honors in St. Peter's 

Since the organization of the army, funerals — not 
at all attended with the pomp of war — were of daily 
occurrence in Philadelphia. John Adams, in a letter 
dated April 13, 1777, says, "I have spent an hour 
this morning in the congregation of the dead. I took 
a walk into the 'Potter's Field' (a burying place be- 
tween the new stone prison and the hospital), and I 
never in my whole life was so affected with melan- 
choly. The graves of the soldiers who have been 
buried in this ground from the hospital and bettering- 
house during the course of last summer, fall, and 
winter, dead of the smallpox and camp diseases, are 
enough to make the heart of stone to melt away. 
The sexton told me that upwards of two thousand 
soldiers have been buried there, and by the appearance 
of the graves and trenches, it is most probable to me 
that he speaks within bounds." This Potter's Field 
was on the site now occupied by the beautiful Wash- 
ington Square. 

But a sadder spectacle than that of the funerals of 
their brethren was in reserve for the Philadelphians. 
On the 19th of September the news reached Congress 
that the enemy had reached the Swedes' Ford, and 

might be in Philadelphia within twenty-four hours. 
The members of Congress, the military officers in the 
city on business or leave, and many gentlemen, active 
supporters of the cause of freedom and independence, 
departed in haste for Trenton and Bristol. The 
people lived in the greatest apprehension until the 
26th, when the enemy entered Philadelphia. The 
event is noted in Robert Morton's diary 1 in these 
words: " September 26th. About eleven o'clock A.M. 
Lord Cornwallis with his division of the British and 
auxiliary troops, amounting to about three thousand, 
marched into this city, accompanied by Enoch Story, 
Joseph Galloway, Andrew Allen, William Allen, and 
others, inhabitants of this city, to the great relief of 
the inhabitants who have too long suffered the yoke 
of arbitrary power ; and who testified their approba- 
tion of the arrival of the troops by the loudest ac- 
clamations of joy.'' 

On the other hand, Watson says J. P. Norris told 
him, " I recollect seeing the division march down 
Second Street when Lord Cornwallis took possession 
of the city, — the troops were gay and well clad. A 
number of our citizens appeared sad and serious. 
When I saw him there was no huzzaing." A lady 
told Mr. Watson, " I saw no exultation in the enemy, 
nor indeed in those who were reckoned favorable to 
their success." If we remember that there were 
many Tories in Philadelphia and that they now had 
the upper hand, it is easy to reconcile these different 
opinions. Some people did rejoice, if others felt " sad 
and serious;" but it is likely that the manifestations 
of joy were subdued, until the British were definitely, 
as was supposed, settled in the city. That respectable 
loyalist, Robert Morton, had occasion, not very long 
after, to change his mind about the " relief from arbi- 
trary power" procured by the coming of Cornwallis. 
He wrote, on the 22d of November, "Seventh day of 
the week. This morning about ten o'clock, the British 
set fire to Fair Hill mansion-house, Jonathan Mifflin's, 
and many others, amounting to eleven, besides out- 
houses, barns, etc. The reason they assign for this 
destruction of their friends' property is on account 
of the Americans firing from these houses and harass- 
ing their pickets. The generality of mankind being 
governed by their interests, it is reasonable to con- 
clude that men whose property is thus wantonly de- 
stroyed under a pretense of depriving their enemy 
of a means of annoying y'm on their march, will 
soon be converted and become their professed enemies. 
. . . Here is an instance that Gen. Washington's 
army cannot be accused of. There is not one instance 
to be produced where they have wantonly destroyed 
and burned their friends' property." 

Mr. Watson tells an amusing anecdote of the man- 
ner in which " Stenton" was saved from destruction 
on the occasion of this act of incendiarism. Stenton 
had been included in the list of (seventeen, not eleven) 

1 See Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography, vol. i. 



mansions doomed to destruction. Two men came to 
execute the order. They told the housekeeper to get 
her thiDgs out while they would go to the barn to pro- 
cure straw to fire it. Hardly had they left the house 
when a British officer rode up in quest of deserters. 
The housekeeper told him that two had come, who 
were hiding in the barn. The officer galloped toward 
that building, crying out, with many oaths, " Come out, 
you rascals, and run before me back to the camp !" 
The incendiaries came out and endeavored to explain 
that they were merely obeying orders. The irate 
officer would not listen, but drove them back to camp, 
and Logan's house was saved. 

Capt. John Heinrichs, of the Hessian Jager Corps, 
was not favorably impressed with Philadelphia, its 
people, or its climate. 1 He writes to his friend in 
Germany that among one hundred persons in or about 
Philadelphia not one has a healthy color, the cause 
of which is the unhealthy air and the bad water, and 
gives a list of diseases that are common every year. 
Some wag must have imposed on him, for he makes 
the strange remark, " Nowhere have I seen so many 
mad people as here. Only yesterday, as I was dining 
with a gentleman, a third person came 
into the room, and he whispered in my 
ear, ' Take care, this gentleman is a mad- 
man !' Frequ en tly the people are cured, 
but almost all have a quiet madness, a 
derangement of mind which proceeds 
from sluggish not active blood." The 
captain finds the climate unendurable; 
the animals, as well as the products of 
the earth, are only half developed; a 
hare, a partridge, a peacock, etc., is only 
half grown. Wild game tastes like ordi- 
nary meat. One of the few good conse- 
quences of this war is, he thinks, that 
more forests will be destroyed, and the 
air will become purer. "A man from 
this city by the name of Hamilton [Wil- 
liam Hamilton, of the Woodlands] alone 
lost fifteen hundred acres of woodlands, 
which was cut down for the hospital, and 
he had sufficient patriotism to remark 
recently in company that it was good for the country." 
He finds that the fertility of the soil is great, " but the 
corn itself is not as good as ours." And yet, this fas- 
tidious Hessian, quoting Burnaby's " Description of 
His Travels," ends his letter by saying, " Among these 
' country houses, pleasure-gardens, and fruitful orch- 
ards' the highly-esteemed Jager Corps have their 
winter-quarters, and where he says ' on the Schuyl- 
kill,' there I mount guard to-morrow. It seems to 
me as if this sketch were plainer than many an engi- 
neer could draw it." Capt. Heinrichs lived to become 
a lieutenant-general in the service of Prussia. 

1 Pennsylvania. Magazine. " The Hessians In Philadelphia :" translated 
by Miss Helen Bell. 

This fault-finding Hessian did not find much to ad- 
mire in a city which had become the first in America 
in population, as it was the first then in commercial 
importance. For neatness of appearance, well-built 
houses, broad streets, — the principal ones and all the 
crossings paved, — excellent police regulations, open 
squares, and fine market-houses, it was second to 
none. Its fairs attracted the country people for many 
miles, and its quays presented a scene of bustle and 
activity seldom seen elsewhere, and to which the 
varied garb of the foreign seamen, the sable-hued 
Africans, and the stolid Germans from the settlements 
added much picturesque charm. For Philadelphia had 
wonderfully improved in the last ten years preceding 
the Revolution, and when the delegates to the first 
Congress assembled there, the impression of those who 
came from distant points was one of pleased surprise. 
The refinement of its society, the cultureof its represen- 
tative men, and the beauty and modesty of its women, 
crowning that large-hearted hospitality born in the 
early Quaker days, made it a " good place to live in." 

Let us say something here of the place where a 
battle raged so near to the city. 

[From an old drawing in Philadelphia Library.] 

Germantown, as its name indicates, was a German 
settlement, and, however changed it is now, had re- 
tained its German character as late as 1793. The 
yellow fever scourge which devastated Philadelphia 
in that year spared Germantown, and many citizens, 
as well as the officers of the general and State govern- 
ments and of the banks, fled from the city to this 
healthier place. After this, the number of English- 
speaking residents increased steadily, and the road to 
the city became, in time, lined with handsome man- 

The first settlers were Francis Daniel Pastorius, 
who purchased the land for himself and others, and 
Jurian Hartsfielder. This purchase was made from 
William Penn in 1683. In 1689, Germantown was 



incorporated as a borough, by a patent from Penn. 
The town lost its charter about the year 1706. Wat- 
son's "Annals'' describe the old houses in Germantown 
as " plastered on the inside with clay and straw mixed, 
and over it is laid a finishing coat of thin lime plaster. 
Some old houses seem to be made with log frames and 
the interstices filled with wattles, river rushes, and 
clay intermixed. In a house of ninety years of age, 
taken down, the grass in the clay appeared as green 
as when cut." These houses were generally of one 
story and built low, with the gable ends on the street. 
The doors were divided at the usual window-sill 
height into two parts, the upper remaining open gen- 
erally to admit air and light, the lower closed so as to 
keep the domestic animals from running into the 
house. Appearing in this upper open half, like a 
picture in a frame, the contemplative German burger 
might be seen, pipe in mouth, his folded arms resting 
on the top-board of the closed lower part, gazing 
dreamily at the peaceful scene of comfort before him, 
with an occasional grunt of satisfaction, as he let the 
curling clouds of smoke escape slowly from between 
his lips. Or it might be the buxom frau, her blue 
handkerchief pinned up to her neck, her sleeves 
rolled up and her bare arms and brown hands show- 
ing the unmistakable and honorable marks of un- 
tiring industry, who would show herself in the aper- 
ture, to hold a few minutes' friendly gossip with a 
neighbor. The fraulein, doubtless, might occupy the 
place of an evening; and "Hans" or "Fritz," slyly 
approaching with his fragrant pipe, may have whis- 
pered to her just as tender vows as any Spanish lover 
thrumming his guitar under his lady-love's balcony, 
in Seville. 

In those days of primeval innocence, the whole 
street of one mile in length, Oldmixon informs us, 
was fronted with blooming peach-trees. But these 
early settlers were industrious, thrifty people; their 
little community grew and prospered so well that 
Kalm, who visited it in 1748, describes it thus, " This 
town has only one street, but is near two English 
miles long. It is for the greatest part inhabited by 
Germans, who from time to time come from their 
country to North America, and settle here because 
they enjoy such privileges as they are not possessed of 
anywhere else. Most of the inhabitants are trades- 
men, and make almost everything in such quantity 
and perfection that in a short time this province will 
want very little from England, its mother country. 
Most of the houses were built of the stone which is 
mixed with glimmer, and found everywhere toward 
Philadelphia, but is more scarce farther on. Several 
houses, however, were made of brick. They were 
commonly two stories high, and sometimes higher. 
The roofs consisted of shingles of the white cedar 
wood. Their shape resembles that of the roofs in 
Sweden, but the angles they formed at the top were 
either obtuse, right-angled, or acute, according as the 
slopes were steep or easy. They sometimes formed 

either the half of an octagon or the half of a dodec- 

" Many of the roofs were made in such a manner 
that they could be walked upon, having a balustrade 
round them. Many of the upper stories had balconies 
before them, from whence the people had a prospect 
into the street. The windows, even those in the third 
story, had shutters. Each house had a fine garden. 
. . . The inhabitants were so numerous that the street 
was always full." 

Dr. Rush, in his "Manners of the Germans of 
Pennsylvania," says, " Pennsylvania is indebted to 
the Germans for the principal part of her knowledge 
in horticulture. There was a time when turnips and 
cabbage were the principal vegetables that were used 
in diet by the citizens of Philadelphia. This will 
not surprise those persons who know that the first 
settlers in Pennsylvania left England while horticul- 
ture was in its infancy in that country." Schoepf 
says that " during the Revolutionary war some of the 
gardens in the vicinity of Philadelphia were im- 
proved by German prisoners, who had been in the 
service of the king of Great Britain. They intro- 
duced and cultivated broccoli, turnip, cabbage, etc." 

Dr. Rush, quoting Tacitus' description of the 
ancient German villages, " Each man leaves a space 
between his house and those of his neighbors, either 
to avoid the danger from fire or from unskillfulness 
in architecture," adds, " Many of the German vil- 
lages in Pennsylvania are constructed in the same 
manner. The small houses are composed of a mix- 
ture of wood, brick, and clay, neatly united. The 
large houses are built of stone, and many of them 
after the English fashion. Very few of the houses in 
Germantown are connected together. Where the 
Germans connect their houses in their villages, they 
appear to have deviated from one of the customs they 
imported from Germany." 

Watson mentions four hermits living near the town 
in 1700, — John Seelig, Kelpius, Bony, and Conrad 
Mathias. They were what remained of a small relig- 
ious community adverse to matrimony, and leading a 
holy, secluded life. Some of the members had been 
tempted to marry, and the sect had gradually died 

There was a great deal of superstition in those days, 
especially among the Germans. The casting of na- 
tivities was much practiced, and those who made pro- 
fession of astrology were called conjurers. " Old 
Shrunk," of Germantown, was looked upon as a great 
conjurer, who could find out stolen goods, discover 
hidden treasures, and do many other marvelous things 
taught by the " black art." It was generally believed 
that he could, by the mere force of his will, compel 
a thief to stand motionless whom he discovered in 
his orchard, which would lead to the belief that he 
was acquainted with animal magnetism, even before 
Mesmer made his public experiments and discovered 
what has been named after him "mesmerism." These 



people believed that the presence of a sphoke or ghost 
in some lonely spot indicated that a treasure was 
buried there. The belief in money and jewels hav- 
ing been buried on the coasts of bays and rivers by 
defunct pirates existed even then. Watson speaks of 
a Col. T. F. | Thomas Forrest], who, at a later period, 
used to amuse himself much with the credulity of the 
people. " He pretended he could hex (conjure) with 
a hazel rod, and often he has had superstitious per- 
sons to come and offer him shares in spoils which they 
had seen a sphoke upon. He even wrote and printed 
a curious old play to ridicule the thing. Describing 
the terrors of a midnight fright in digging, he makes 
one of the party to tell his wife: 

" My deareBt wife, in all my life 
Ich neber was so fritened ; 
Be spirit come, and Ich did run, 
'Tw;ls juste like tunder, mid lightning. " 

Owing to the want of good roads the travel from 
Germantown to Philadelphia was no trifling matter, 
yet the women often walked to town on market days, 
carrying heavy baskets on their heads, while the men 
trundled cumbrous wheelbarrows. Other farmers, 
however, drove their wagons, and the farmers' wives 
rode stout horses, with two paniers slung on each 
side. On going to church or to fairs, the custom was, 
as it 'existed in Europe at that time, for man and 
woman to ride the same horse, the woman sitting 
on a pillion behind the man. It was a long time be- 
fore chaises or any kind of pleasure vehicles came 
into use. The wagons, made to carry heavy loads of 
produce and merchandise, were great, cumbersome 
things, with enormous wheels, which went creaking 
along at such a pace as precluded all thoughts of an 
enjoyable ride. 

The Germans of Germantown, as it has been stated 
before, were principally tradesmen and manufacturers. 
They made very good linens, and became also famous 
for their manufacture of stockings. The very fact of 
having bad roads leading into the city had helped to 
build up the prosperity of Germantown, for, Mr. Wat- 
son tells us, " to avoid such, farmers bringing produce 
could sell out their whole loads in Germantown. In 
return they could get salt, fish, plaster of Paris, clover- 
and grass-seed, all kinds of groceries and dry-goods." 
Hence the great country stores of that time, which 
did a thriving business until turnpikes were built and 
the farmers took to driving straight to the city. 
"Such stores were granaries for all kinds of grain, 
and received and cured hogs and beef. They all 
made money. You might see a dozen wagons at a 
time about their premises." 

Such was the town in and about which the British 
lodged their troops when they took possession of Phil- 
adelphia. " They took up all the fences," says Mr. 
Watson, "and made the rails into huts by cutting 
down all the buckwheat, putting it on the rails, and 
ground over that. No fences remained. . . . At that 
time and during all the war all business was at a 

stand. Not a house was roofed or mended in Ger- 
mantown in five or six years. Most persons who had 
any substance lived in part on what they could pro- 
cure on loan. The people pretty generally were men- 
tally adverse to the war, equal, certainly, to two- thirds 
of the population of the place who felt as if they had 
anything to lose by the contest. So several have 
told me." 

The British officers were quartered in houses in the 
town, and demeaned themselves with propriety. The 
soldiers were held under strict discipline, yet there 
were cases of individual robbing and plundering for 
which the inhabitants could obtain no redress, owing 
to the difficulty of identifying the offenders. " A 
large body of Hessians were hutted in Ashmead's 
field, out the School Lane, near the woods. Their 
huts were constructed of the rails from fences, set up 
at an angle of 45°, resting on a crossbeam centre. 
Over these was laid straw, and above the straw grass 
sod. They were close and warm. Those for the offi- 
cers had wicker doors, with a glass light, and inter- 
woven with plaited straw. They had also chimneys 
made of sod-grass. They no doubt had prepared so 
to pass the winter, but the battle broke up their plans. 
One of the Hessians afterward became Washington's 
coachman." 1 

Gen. Howe occupied Logan's house some time. 
The house No. 4782 Main Street, now Germantown 
Avenue, possesses rare historic interest. It was built 
by David Deshler, an old merchant of Philadelphia, 
in 1772 to 1774, and was owned by him at the time 
of the battle of Germantown, when it was taken pos- 
session of by Sir William Howe, commander-in-chief 
of the British army, as his headquarters, when he 
moved from Stenton, with his forces to oppose the 
attack by Washington on the British outposts. After 
the battle he continued to occupy the house for some 
time, and tradition has it that he here received a visit 
from the future King William IV., then a midship- 
man in the British navy. 

In 1782 the property was sold by David Deshler to 
Col. Isaac Franks, who had been aide-de-camp to 
Washington. On the outbreak of the yellow fever in 
Philadelphia, in 1793, Col. Franks closed his house 
and went to Bethlehem, Pa. Soon after, on account 
of the fever, Congress left Philadelphia, the seat of 
government was removed to Germantown, and Wash- 
ington, as President of the United States, rented Col. 
Franks' vacated house ready furnished. An inventory 
taken at that time is still preserved. 

In 1804 the premises were purchased jointly by 
Elliston and John Perot as a summer residence. 
They continued to own and occupy it thus until 
1834, when, upon the death of Elliston Perot, their 
property was divided, and this house fell to his share, 
and became part of his estate. In 1834 it was pur- 
chased by his son-in-law, Samuel B. Morris, a mem- 

1 Watson's Annals of Philadelphia, vol. ii. 



ber of the old shipping-house of Wain & Morris, 
who made it his permanent residence, and lived there 
until his death, in 1859, leaving it by his will to his son, 
Elliston P. Morris, the present owner, who now (1884) 
resides in it. Owing to its successive family owner- 
ship of eighty years, the property has been kept in 
perfect repair, and, with scarcely any change, re- 
mains to-day the same as when occupied by Gen. 
Howe and President Washington. It is paneled 
throughout, and most of its old-fashioned, open fire- 
places are surrounded by quaint tiling, and the win- 
dows retain their old eight-by-ten glasses, imported 
from Germany for the building. 1 

The British Gen. Agnew, who was killed in the 
battle of Germantown, had his headquarters in " Wis- 
ter's big house, opposite Indian Queen Lane." Christo- 
pher Huber's house (afterward Samuel Shoemaker's, 
and since Duval's) was turned into a tailoring-shop 
for the army. The shoemaker- and blacksmith-shops 
were also taken possession of, and the soldier-work- 
men would proceed thence daily, in squads, to do 
their work. The owners of the shops generally as- 
sisted them in their task, in order to keep an eye on 
their tools and property. 

Eeuben Haines' house was made use of by the 
British surgeons as a hospital ward for amputating 
limbs, etc., after the battle. The American wounded 
were taken to another house on the hill. Chew's 
house has become celebrated from the fact that to the 
delay caused by the attempt to dislodge the British 
soldiers intrenched in it has been attributed the loss 
of the fight. John Dickinson's handsome house at 
Fair Hill, where he wrote his celebrated " Farmer's 
Letters," was burned by the British after the battle, 
the beautiful woods cut down, and the place laid 
waste. This was the house mentioned by John 
Adams in his diary (in 1774) : " Went with my col- 
leagues and Messrs. Thomson and Mifflin to the Falls 
of Schuylkill, and viewed the museum at Fort St. 
David's ; a great collection of curiosities. Returned 
and dined with Mr. Dickinson at his seat at Fair Hill, 
with his lady, Mrs. Thomson, Miss Norris, and Miss 
Harrison. Mr. Dickinson has a fine seat, a beautiful 
prospect of the city, the river, and country, fine gar- 
dens, and a very grand library. The most of the 
books were collected by Mr. Norris, once Speaker of 
the House here, father of Mrs. Dickinson." 

Mr. Townsend Ward, in his interesting papers on 
"The Germantown Road and its Associations," pub- 
lished in the Pennsylvania Magazine of History and 
Biography, mentions a house on the road to Naglee's 
Hill in which is to be seen a curious relic of the olden 
time. He says, " On a pane of glass in one of the 
windows of the house a guest, it is believed an officer 

1 The picture of the " Morris House," which should have been inserted 
with this notice, has been in error printed under the notice of Robert 
Morris, the financier, in vol. i. page 278. The house iu Germantown 
was in no way connected with him. 

of the Hessian force, engraved with the diamond of 
his ring an admirable equestrian likeness of Freder- 
ick the Great. On the lower margin he inscribed his 
name, ' M. J. Ellinkhuysen, fecit, 1783, Philadelphia.' 
The glass of the windows are of the early eight-by-ten 
size, and many in their turn became broken. This 
one fortunately escaped, and about thirty years ago 
Mr. Toland had it removed and framed for preserva- 
tion. One of the last acts of Miss Toland was to per- 
mit this engraving to be reproduced." At the time 
of the British occupation this house was George 
Miller's, who became a colonel in the army. His 
house was made the quarters of more than a dozen of 
the British officers. 

We will now resume our narrative of events in 
Philadelphia. Time is a wonderful pacificator, and 
the allurements of pleasure are often irresistible, es- 
pecially with the fair sex. The rulers were courteous 
and agreeable ; they were received as friends by the 
Tory families ; they gave entertainments, balls, and 
theatricals; the winter of 1777-78 was a season of 
gayety unprecedented, probably, in the annals of the 
city. The belles could not resist such attractions, 
and some of the Whig ladies partook of these amuse- 
ments without giving up their principles. They may 
have had many, to them, excellent reasons. With 
some it may have been a matter of policy, a desire to 
conciliate the enemy, and to protect some persecuted 
relative; others might entertain the hope of conquer- 
ing the conquerors by the power of their charms; 
others, still, would not give up the field to their 
rivals, the Tory belles ; and, lastly, some there were, 
doubtless, who did not see the importance of the act, 
but thought only of the fleeting moment of pleasure 
they would enjoy. At all events there was no lack of 
fair faces at the great " Meschianza," gotten up by the 
British officers on the 18th of May, 1778, as a sort of 
fete d'adieux. 

The first month or two of the occupation, however, 
had not been a, very agreeable period. The Phila- 
delphians, accustomed to good living, and who had 
ever had good things in abundance, suffered from the 
scarcity of provisions. Then hard money was ex- 
ceedingly rare and paper money was worthless. In- 
deed, it had depreciated to such an extent before the 
arrival of the British that silk sold at one hundred 
dollars per yard, and tea commanded fifty and sixty 
dollars per pound. But this " hard times" period did 
not last long, and if prices remained high, merchandise 
of every kind was not wanting. 

The British evacuated Philadelphia, and right upon 
their heels came in the Americans. It was now the 
turn of the Whigs to rejoice, and bitter were their 
feelings toward the Tories who had welcomed the 
British invaders. A ball was given at the City 
Tavern "to the young ladies who had manifested 
their attachment to the cause of virtue and freedom 
by sacrificing every convenience to the love of their 
country." Many were of the opinion that the Tory 



ladies who had taken part in the Meschianza should 
be excluded from this ball, and, in fact, be " put in 
Coventry" altogether, but this did not prevail, and 
Tory belles danced with the American officers, as 
the Whig belles had danced with the British. Gen. 
Wayne wrote from camp in July, "Tell those Phila- 
delphia ladies who attended Howe's assemblies and 
levies that the heavenly, sweet, pretty red-coats, the 
accomplished gentlemen of the guards and grenadiers, 
have been humbled on the plains of Monmouth. The 
knights of the Blended Roses and of the Burning Mount 
have resigned their laurels to rebel officers, who will 
lay them at the feet of those virtuous daughters of 
America who cheerfully gave up ease and affluence 
in a city for liberty and peace of mind in a cottage." l 
Gen. Arnold, the military commander of the city, 
did not think as Gen. Wayne, for he not only gave 
the example of extravagant display and unblushing 
speculation, but paid particular attentions to the Tory 
ladies. Mrs. Robert Morris wrote to her mother at 
this time, " I know of no news, unless to tell you we 
are very gay is such. We have a great many balls 
and entertainments, and soon the Assembly will be- 
gin. Tell Mr. Hall even our military gentlemen are 
too liberal to make any distinction between Whig 
and Tory ladyes. If they make any, it is in favor of 
the latter. Such, strange as it may seem, is the way 
those things are conducted at present in this city. It 
originates at headquarters, and that I may make some 
apology for such strange conduct, I must tell you that 
Cupid has given our little general a more mortal 
wound than all the hosts of Britons could, unless his 
present conduct can expiate for his past. Miss Peggy 
Shippen is the fair one." 

The father of the fair Peggy, Edward Shippen, Jr., 
did not quite approve of the prevailing extravagance, 
for he wrote to his father in December of that year, 
"I shall find myself under the necessity of removing 
from this scene of expense, and I don't know where 
I could more properly go than to Lancaster. The 
common articles of life, such as are absolutely neces- 
sary for a family, are not much higher here than in 
Lancaster, but the style of living my fashionable 
daughters have introduced into my family and their 
dress will, I fear, before long oblige me to change the 
scene. The expense of supporting my family here 
will not fall short of four or five thousand pounds 
per annum, an expense insupportable without busi- 
ness." A few months previous to this he wrote to his 
father that it would be very difficult to procure any 
Madeira wine for him ; " the only pipe I have heard 
of for sale was limited at eight or nine hundred 
pounds. . . . There is no such a thing as syrup, the 
sugar bakers having all dropped the business a long 

An event in the month of July of that year was 
the arrival of the French ambassador, Monsieur 

1 Life and Services of Gen. Anthony Wayne. By H. N. Moore. 

Gerard. A grand banquet was given in his honor. 
On the 23d of August, the birthday of Louis XVI., 
the President and the members of Congress called 
upon the ambassador to offer their congratulations, 
and two days afterward he gave a handsome enter- 
tainment at the City Tavern. 

Mrs. Washington arrived in Philadelphia about the 
middle of December. On the 17th an entertainment 
was given in her honor, from which the Tories were 
excluded. " The only public evidence of grace we 
have had," says Dunlap's paper, "in that infatuated 
tribe is that not a Tory advocate nor a quondam 
Whig interfered on this joyous occasion." The 
French minister and the president of the State were 
present. It was a very brilliant assemblage, and 
every one vied in paying respect to the wife of the 
commander-in-chief, in whom the hopes of all true 
Americans were centred. 

Washington arrived on the 22d of the month. 
The impression produced on his mind by the scenes 
of folly and extravagance he witnessed was that of a 
great sadness, and he must have possessed the greatest 
fortitude to resist the discouraging thoughts that as- 
sailed him when he wrote to Col. Harrison, of Vir- 
ginia, " If I were to be called upon to draw, a picture 
of the times and of men from what I have seen, heard, 
and in part know, I should in one word say, that idle- 
ness, dissipation, and extravagance seem to have laid 
fast hold of most of them. That speculation, pecu- 
lation, and an insatiable thirst for riches seems to 
have got the best of every other consideration, and 
almost every order of men ; that party disputes and 
personal quarrels are the great business of the day, 
while the momentous concerns of an empire, a great 
and accumulating debt, ruined finances, depreciated 
money, and want of credit, which in its consequences 
is the want of everything, are but secondary consid- 
erations, and postponed from day to day, from week 
to week, as if our affairs wore the most promising as- 
pect. . . . Our money is now sinking fifty per cent, a 
day in this city, and I shall not be surprised if, in the 
course of a few months, a total stop is put to the cur- 
rency of it; and yet an assembly, a concert, a dinner, 
or a supper that will cost three or four hundred 
pounds, will not only take men off from acting in 
this business, but even from thinking of it ; while a 
great part of the officers of our army, from absolute 
necessity, are quitting the service, and the more vir- 
tuous few, rather than do this, are sinking by sure 
degrees into beggary and want." 1 ' 

What a graphic picture! and how useless the add- 
ing another touch to it ! 

Meanwhile, the ladies had got a new mania for high 
head-dresses, — the old fashion revived, with exagger- 
ated proportions. Timothy Pickering, writing from 
Philadelphia to his wife in Salem, comments as fol- 
lows upon the follies of fashion: 

2 Writings of Washington, Sparks, vol. v. p. 151. 



"I mentioned to you the euormous head-dresses of the ladies here. 
The more I see the morel am displeased with them. 'Tis surprising 
how they fix such loads of trumpery on their polls; and not less so that 
they are by any one deemed ornamental! The Whig ladies seem aB fond 
of them aB others. I am told by a French gentleman they are in the 
true French taste, only that they want a few French feathers. The 
married ladies, however, are not all infected. One of the handsomest 
(Gen. Mifflin's lady) I have seen in this State does not dress her head 
higher than was common at Salem a year ago. But you know, my dear, 
I have odd, old-fashioned notions. Neither powder nor pom-itum has 
touched my head thiB twelvemonth, not even to cover my baldness. 
The latter I find a very common thing, now men have left off their 

In connection with these absurdly high head- 
dresses an anecdote is told of the Tory belle and fa- 
mous wit, Miss Rebecca Franks. She was entertain- 
ing Col. Jack Stewart, of Maryland, an old but un- 
fortunate admirer of hers, who had called upon her 
after the departure of the British forces, when a noise 
in the street drew them to the window. The crowd 
was jeering a figure in female attire, who wore a 
head-dress of enormous size, — a caricature of the 
style by which the Tory belles distinguished them- 
selves, while her skirts were ragged and her feet bare. 
"The lady is equipped altogether in the English 
fashion," unluckily remarked the colonel. "Not al- 
together, colonel," was Miss Frank's prompt rejoinder, 
" for, though the style of her head is British, her 
shoes and stockings are in the genuine Continental 

The press kept up an incessant warfare against the 
extravagant fashions, but with indifferent success. 
The United States Gazette for 1779 fired this hot shot : 

"Ladies are. accused of robbing their breasts of guuze, cambric, and 
muslin fur the use of their heads, with quilts or supernumerary upper 
petticoats fur cushions, pomatum, powder, and essence, — above, their 
heads tower to the extremity of the fashion ; below, a single petticuat 
leaves them as lank as rats." 

But the ladies were not alone guilty of extravagance ; 
the gentlemen laid themselves open to criticism, and 
were thus severely handled by a writer in the United 
States Magazine for 1777, in an article entitled " A Re- 
taliation :" 

" Does not your hair — cherokeed, coupeed, raised in form of a pyra- 
mid, pinned, curled, frizzed, buckled, plaited, rainilled, cued, clubbed, 
confined iu a hag, or Ioonoly flowing on the shoulders — revolve through 
as varied a whimsicality of moded as any female's on this continent? 
And tu complete the whole, have not many of you, in this scarcity of 
tortoise-shell, introduced the crooked comb, lest some rude breath of 
wind might derange a struggling hair from the position to which your 
friseur may have confined it? 

"They are imitators of the enemy. Nor has love of country pre- 
vented the Anspacher 1 from triumphing even over the hat d la Wash- 
ington. 3 

" When silver was plenty and easy attainable, an insignificant piece, 
much about the size ot an English shilling, fixed above the upper joint 
of the grt-at toe, gave the foot an inimitable grace and elegance in the 
eyes of the spectator ; but in the present scarcity of that metal, behold 
the buckle expanded over the shoe in quantity sufficient for a tankard 
or a C"ffee-pot. 

"At present we are deprived of almost every source of supplying furs, 
and you know the extreme demand for wool for the manufacture of 

i The large hat, so called because worn by the Auspachers. 
2 The small military hat which was generally used in our army, and 
which had been introduced into France by that appellation. 

clothing. As a natural consequence, the hat, which was lately pared 
and pruned till its little brim left the nose of the wearer exposed to the 
scorching heat of the noonday sun, is now metamorphosed and extended 
to the s'ze of my tea-table, till, involved in the vast circuit, we are often 
at a loss to know where to find the head of the owner; and, when found, 
we sometimes discover it is not worth the trouble it cost us in the 

" When superfine cloth might be purchased for thirty shillings, and 
other materials for clothing were proportionably was really 
difficult, without the aid of a magnitying-glass, to discover where were 
the Bkirts of your coats, or whether they had any skirts at all. At pres- 
ent they have got below the knee. And I have no doubt, should the 
prices of articles increase five or six hundred per cent., we shall Bee 
them d la Hesse, dangling below the middle of the leg, like those worn 
by the officers made prisoners that night when the fate of millions yet 
unborn was vibrating in the air, and the guardian angel of America, in 
the person of our illustrious chieftain, preponderated in the scale. 

" I can very well remember the time when a little rattan was thought 
a necessary appendage for the hand of a smart fellow, but now discarded 
from all kind of estimation. The gold-headed cane, with its string and 
tassel, hath become almost as necessary as the hand that carries it or 
the wrist on which it is huug." 

The following list of articles stolen from Jacob 
Bankson, "living in Penn Street, corner of an alley 
leading to Willing's & Morris' wharf," will give an 
idea of a private citizen's wardrobe in 1779: 

"One light-colored cloth coat ; one purple ditto; narrow red and white 
stripped linen coat and waistcoat; scarlet cloth jacket; breeches, edged 
with white silver buttons; one Bcarlet ditto; waistcoat, worsted back, 
yellow metal buttons; one buff-cloth waistcoat and breeches, plated sil- 
ver buttons; oue white cloth waistcoat and breeches, one white cloth 
waistcoat with a belt ; one pair brown cloth breeches ; one elegant large 
cotton counterpane ; two morning-gowns, one single and the other double; 
two women's long cotton gowns; one white Hulland polance; one pair 
scarlet Bilk-velvet breeches, gold knee-bands ; one black cloth coat, waist- 
coat, and breeches; one black silk waistcoat and breeches; one elegant 
shaded silk gown and petticoat; two pink Mantua gowns; one pink Man- 
tua polance ; one nankeen riding-dress; one long scarlet cloth coat, etc., 

Four hundred pounds reward were offered for the 
return of these goods. 

To complete the picture, we have the description of 
the outfit of a bridegoom furnished in Philadelphia 
and for use during the honeymoon : 

"A light-colnred broadcloth coat, with pearl buttons; breechesof the 
aamo cloth ; ditto black satin; bestswansdown huff stripe; ditto moskin, 
checker figure; ditto satin figured ; ditto Marseilles, white ; ditto mus- 
lin set, figured; nndervest, faced with red cassimere ; two ditto, flan- 
nels ; one ditto cotton ditto ; one pair black patent silk hose; one ditto, 
white ditto; one ditto, stripe ditto; tPn or one dozen white silk hose; 
three pairs of cotton hose; four pairs of gauze ditto; a towel; six 
shirts; twelve neck-kerchiefs; six pocket-handkerchiefs, oue a ban- 
danna; a chintz dressing-gown; a pair of silk gloves; ditto old kid 

Mrs. Bache, in her letters to her father, Dr. Frank- 
lin, who was then American minister to France, re- 
fers frequently to the high prices and scarcity of 
articles of dress ; 

" They really iisk me six dollars for a pair of gloves, and T have been 
obliged to pay fifteen pounds fifteen shillings for a common calamanco 
petticoat without quilting, that I once could have pot for fifteen shil- 
lings. I buy nothing but what I really want, and wore out my silk 
ones before I got this. . . . The prices of everything here are so much 
raised that it takes a fortune to feed a family in a very plain way. A 
pair of glovua seven dollars, one yard of common gauze twenty-four 
dollars, and there never was so much dressing and pleasure going on, — 
old fiiends meeting again, the Whigs in high spirits, and strangers of 
distinction among us. . . . The minister was kind enough to offer me 
some fine white flannel, and has spared me eight yards. I wish to have 
it in my power to return him as good, which I will beg you will enable 



me to do." . . . She bad asked for some fine linen, long black pins, and 
some lace and featbr-rs, to be sent to her from France. Franklin ends a 
letter of mild reproof with the following characteristic remarks: "I 
therefore send all the articles yon desire that are useful and necessary, 
and omit the rest ; for, aa you say you should ' have great pride in wear- 
ing anything I send, and showing it as your father's taste, 1 1 must avoid 
giving you an opportunity of doing that with either lace or featherB. If 
you wear your cambric ruffles as I do, and take care not to mend the 
holes, they will come in time to be lace ; and feathers, my dear girl, they 
may be had in America from every cock's tail." Mrs. Bache, in her let- 
ter in reply to this, justifies herself from any wish to be extravagant, 
and says, further, "I can assure my dear papa that industry in this 
house is by no means laid aside; but as to spinning linen, we cannot 
think of that till we have got that wove which we spun three years 
ago. ... I did not mention the feathers and pins as necessaries of life, 
as my papa seems to think. I meant as common necessaries were so 
dear, I could not afford to get anything that was not, and begged he 
would send me a few of the others. . . . Home will be the place for me 
this winter, as I cannot get a common winter cloak and hat, but just 
decent, under two hundred pounds. As to gauze, now it is fifty dollars 
a yard, 'tis beyond my wish, and I should think it not only a shame, but 
a Bin, to buy it if I had millions. I should be contented with muslin 
caps if I could procure them in winter; in the summer I went without; 
and aB to cambric, I have none to make lace of." 1 

The private letters of that period of folly all agree 
in deploring the general extravagance. 2 Gen. Greene 
wrote that the luxury he thought predominant in 
Boston was no more to be compared to what prevailed 
in-Philadelphia "than an infant babe to a full-grown 
man." He dined at one table where there were " an 
hundred and sixty dishes." Franklin is " astonished 
and vexed" to find that "much the greatest part of 
the Congress interest bills come to pay for tea, and a 
great part of the remainder is ordered to be laid out 
in gewgaws and superfluities.'' An entertainment is 
spoken of at which eight hundred pounds were spent 
in pastry. 

A letter to Gen. Wayne from a brother-officer in 
Philadelphia tells of the effect this extravagance had 
on society : 

"Permit me now to say a little of the dress, manners, and customs of 
the town's people. In respect to the first, great alterations have taken 
place since I was last here. It is all gayety, and, from what I can ob- 
serve, every lady and gentleman endeavors to outdo the other in splen- 
dor and show. The manners of the ladies are much changed ; they 
have really, in a great measure, lost that native innocence in their 
manners which formerly was their characteristic, and supplied its place 
■with what they call an easy behavior. The manner of entertaining in 
this place has likewise undergone its change. Tou cannot conceive 
anything more elegant than the present taste. You will hardly dine at 
a table but they present you with three courses, and each of them in 
the most elegant manner." 

What a contrast these pictures of luxurious living 
present to Washington's well-known personal econ- 
omy, even during better times, as illustrated in the 
following anecdote, related by Mr. Griswold in his 
" Republican Court." It was during Presidential 
times in New York. " Fraunces (the steward of Pres- 
ident Washington) was always anxious to provide the 
first dainties of the season for his table. On one oc- 
casion, making his purchases at the old Vly Market, 

1 Letters to Benjamin Franklin from his Family and Friends, and 
Works of Franklin, Sparks. 

2 See the interesting sketch "Philadelphia Society One Hundred 
Years Ago," in the Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography, No. 
4 of vol. iii. 


he observed a fine shad, the first of the season. He 
was not long in making a bargain, and the fish was 
sent home with his other provisions. The next morn- 
ing it was duly served, in the best style, for breakfast, 
on sitting down to which Washington observed the 
fragrant delicacy, and asked what it was. The stew- 
ard replied that it was ' a fine shad.' ' It is very early 
in the season for shad ; how much did you pay for it?' 
' Two dollars.' ' Two dollars ! I can never encourage 
this extravagance at my table; take it away ; I will 
not touch it.' The shad was accordingly removed, 
and Fraunces, who had no such economical scruples, 
made a hearty meal upon it in his own room." 

A glance at the prices paid for various necessaries 
of life will give an idea of the depreciation of paper 
money in 1779, and make the culpable extravagance 
of the fashionable society still more incomprehens- 
ible. Butter sold at from two to three dollars a pound ; 
flour at twenty pounds the hundred-weight; green 
peas, twenty to twenty-five shillings the half-peck. 
A silk handkerchief cost forty dollars, a man's hat 
four hundred dollars, a pair of leather-breeches three 
hundred dollars, a pair of shoes one hundred and 
twenty-five dollars, and a suit of clothes sixteen hun- 
dred dollars ! Fish must have been dear, when a 
fish-hook was worth half a dollar 1 Such was the 
price at which William Livingston bought a few 
for Anthony Bleeker and some other "gentlemen 

It is no wonder that the excitement caused by this 
abnormal state of things culminated in the riot 
known as the " Fort Wilson Affair." That the dis- 
turbance was short-lived and was suppressed at the 
cost of so few lives is still more surprising. 

The utter want of discretion of the Tories, their 
open sympathy with the enemy of their country, and 
their avowed hostility to the government, caused gen- 
eral indignation and, not unfrequently, fierce denun- 
ciations. These infatuated people seemed to court 
persecution. The Tory ladies, especially, made them- 
selves conspicuous by their open sympathy for every- 
thing British. Governor William Livingston, of New 
Jersey, says, in a letter to his daughter in Philadel- 
phia, " I know that there are a number of flirts in 
Philadelphia, equally famed for their want of modesty 
as want of patriotism, who will triumph in our over- 
complaisance to the red-coated prisoners lately ar- 
rived in that metropolis. I hope none of my con- 
nections will imitate them, either in the dress of their 
heads or in the still more Tory feelings of their 

But if such frivolous creatures were to be met with 
in Philadelphia, that city could boast of a large ma- 
jority of true-hearted daughters of America. In the 
spring of 1780, when the distress of the American army 
was at its height, the ladies of Philadelphia under- 
took to collect by voluntary subscriptions money and 
clothes for the tattered soldiers, who were suffering 
such terrible deprivations in the cause of freedom. 



Mrs. Reed was at the head of this movement, which 
was eminently successful, for the collections in Phila- 
delphia City and County alone amounted to upwards 
of three hundred thousand dollars paper currency. 
Circulars were addressed to neighboring counties and 
States, and met generally with a liberal response. 
Maryland and New Jersey contributed generously. 

William B. Reed, in his " Life of Esther Reed," 
says, "The original memoranda and accounts of 
these contributions, with the names of each commit- 
tee and contributor, are in my possession. The num- 
ber of contributors was 1645, thus apportioned : The 
city, 1099 ; Southwark, 152 ; Northern Liberties, 171 ; 
Germantown, 152 ; and Bristol, 13. All ranks of soci- 
ety seem to have united, from Phillis, the colored 
woman, with her humble 7s. 6d., to the Marchioness 
de Lafayette, who contributed one hundred guineas 
in specie, and the Countess de Luzerne, six thousand 
dollars in Continental paper and one hundred and 
fifty dollars in specie." 

We take the liberty of copying in externa from Mr. 
Reed's book two letters of historic interest. The 
first is addressed to Gen. Washington, and dated 
Philadelphia, July 4, 1780 : 

" Sib, — The subscription set on foot by tbe ladies of this city for the 
use of the soldiery is so far completed as to induce me to transm it to 
your Excellency an account of the money I have received, and which, 
although it has answered our expectations, it does not equal our wishes, 
. but I am persuaded will be received as a proof of zeal for the great cause 
of America, and our esteem and gratitude for those who so bravely de- 
fend it. 

" The amount of the subscription is 200,580 dollars, and £625 6s. 8d. 
in specie, which makes in the whole in paper money 300,634 dollars. 

"The ladies are anxious for the soldiers to receive the benefit of it, 
and wait your directions how it can beBt be disposed of. We expect some 
considerable additions from the country, and have also wrote to the 
other States in hopes the ladies there will adopt similar plans to render 
it more general and beneficial. 

" With the utmost pleasure I offer any further attention and care in 
my power to complete the execution of the design, and shall be happy 
to accomplish it agreeably to the intentions of the donors and your 
wishes on the subject. 

" The ladies of my family join me in their respectful compliments and 
sincere prayer for your health, safety, and success. I have the honor 
to be, with the highest respect, 

*' Tour obedient humble servant, 

" E. Reed.*' 

The other letter accompanied the offering of Madame 
de Lafayette : 

" Headquarters, June 25, 1780. 
"Madam, — In admiring the new resolution, in which the fair ones of 
Philadelphia have taken the lead, I am induced to feel for those Amer- 
ican ladies who, being out of the continent, cannot participate in this 
patriotic measure. I know of one who, heartily wishing for a personal 
acquaintance with tbe ladiesof America, would feel particularly happy 
to be admitted among them on the present occasion. Without presuming 
to break in upon the rules of your respected association, may I most 
humbly present myself as her ambassador to the confederate ladies, and 
solicit in her name that Mrs. President be pleased to accept of her offer- 
ing. With the highest respect, I have the honour to be, Madam, 
" Your most obedient servant, 

" Lafatettk." 

In Washington's answer to Mrs. Reed, he suggests 
that the amount collected should be deposited in the 
newly-created bank, and bank-notes received in lieu 
of it to purchase the articles intended. He adds : 

" This, while serviceable to the bank and advancing 
its operations, seems to have no inconvenience to the 
intentions of the ladies. By uniting the efforts of 
patriotism they will reciprocally promote each other, 
and I should imagine the ladies will have no objec- 
tion to a union with the gentlemen." 

It is refreshing, after recording scenes of frivolity 
and extravagance, to dwell upon such evidences of 
noble patriotism. The former are forgiven and for- 
gotten ; the latter will live forever in the hearts of 
true Americans. However great the sufferings of our 
forefathers, however praiseworthy their endurance 
and self-sacrifice, they could not have accomplished 
their work if the women of America had not been 
faithful to the holy cause of freedom and independ- 
ence. The names of the heroes of the Revolution 
have been recorded in prose and verse. How many 
acts of female heroism have passed unknown or un- 
remembered ? Had she not the heart of a heroine, 
that Philadelphia lady who wrote to a British officer, 
a former friend of her family, " I will tell you what 
I have done. My only brother I have sent to the 
camp with my prayers and blessings, and had I 
twenty sons and brothers they should go to emulate 
the great examples before them. I have retrenched 
every superfluous expense in my table and family. 
Teal have not drank since last Christmas, nor bought 
a new cap or gown since your defeat at Lexington. 
I have the pleasure to assure you that these are the 
sentiments of all my sister Americans. They have 
sacrificed assemblies, parties, tea-drinkings, and finery 
to the great spirit of patriotism. If these are our 
sentiments, what must be the resolutions of our hus- 
bands but to die or be free I All rauks of men among 
us are in arms. Nothing is heard in our streets but 
the trumpet and drum, and the universal cry is 
' Americans to arms!' " But this was written in the 
early days of enthusiasm. Many thought and acted 
likewise, who, while still ready to sacrifice their lives, 
could not, at a later date, steer clear of the whirlpool 
of fashionable extravagance. 

The taste for fashionable frivolity and display 
during the gloomy winter of 1780 was not confined 
to Philadelphia. Eugene Lawrence, in speaking of 
New York City at this time, in a paper read before 
the New York Historical Society, 1 Jan. 6, 1857, says, 
" Meanwhile, in the midst of all this suffering and 
want, the city streets were filled with the fashions and 
luxuries of Europe. The ladies crowded William 
Street, and the merchants spread out the most costly 
wares. French silks, captured in some unlucky 
vessels, sold readily at extravagant rates. Lutestrings 
and poplins, brocades, and the best broadcloth of 
England were shown on the counters of William 
Street and Wall ; and it is a curious circumstance 
that through all the war William Prince, of Flushing, 
continued his advertisement of fruit and flowers, of 

> History of New York City, by William L. Stone, p. 268, note. 



magnolias and apricots, and of the finest grafts and 
the rarest seeds." 

Mrs. Riedesel, wife of a German general in the 
British service, in a letter to her. mother tells a laugh- 
able anecdote of fashion. " We remained," she wrote, 
" the entire summer of 1780 upon this lovely estate" 
(Gen. Clinton's country-seat on the Hudson). " Two 
Miss Robinsons came to share our loneliness and 
enliven our little company. They remained with us 
a fortnight previous to our return to the city, when 
the news of the arrival of a ship from England, bring- 
ing over the latest fashions, took them back again to 
the town. On our return to the city I scarcely recog- 
nized them in their odd and actually laughable garb, 
which a very pretty woman, just over from England, 
had imposed upon them and the other New York 
ladies. . . . Accordingly, she made them think that 
in England they wore bodies that were parted in the 
middle, whereby the points stuck upwards, hoops as 
large around as those of a hogshead, and very short 
cloaks tied up with ribbons, all of which they believed 
implicitly, and copied after." 1 

Witty Rebecca Franks was in New York at that 
time, her father, David Franks, having been invited 
by the Pennsylvania government to leave Phila- 
delphia, and in one of her chatty letters to her sister 
— the wife of Andrew Hamilton — she pays a high 
compliment to the Philadelphians. She wrote, " By 
the bye, few ladies here know how to entertain com- 
pany in their own houses, unless they introduce the 
card-table. Except the Van Homes, who are re- 
markable for their good sense and ease, I don't know 
a woman or girl who can chat above half an hour, 
and that on the form of a cap, the color of a ribbon, 
or the set of a hoop, stay, or jupon. I will do our 
ladies — that is, the Philadelphians — the justice to say, 
that they have more cleverness in the turn of an eye 
than those of New York have in their whole com- 
position. With what ease have I seen a Chew, a 
Penn, an Oswald, an Allen, and a thousand others, 
entertain a large circle of both sexes, the conversation, 
without the aid of cards, never flagging nor seeming 
in the least strained or stupid." Miss Franks was 
certainly a judge in matters conversational. She 
concedes, entre nous, to the New York girls one 
advantage over the Philadelphians: they have a 
greater quantity of hair and better forms. She rattles 
away about the ways of the New York ladies, who 
avow too freely their partiality for a man and are the 
first to show a preference, and finally comes down to 
the question of dress. She describes the fashions as 
follows: "I shall send a pattern of the newest 
bonnets: there is no crown, but gauze is raised on 
wire, and pinched to a sugar loaf at the top, — the 
lighter the trimming the more fashionable, — and all 
quilling. Nancy Van Home and myself employed 
yesterday morning in trying to dress a rag baby in 

1 Ibid. 

the fashion, but could not succeed ; it shall go, how- 
ever, as it will in some degree give you an opinion on 
the subject. As to the jacket, and the pinning on 
of the handkerchief, yours, you say, reaches to the 
arm. I know it, hut it must be pinned up to the top 
of the shoulders, and quite under the arm, as you 
would a girl's Vandyke. The fuller it sets the hand- 
somer it is thought. Nobody ever sets a handkerchief 
out in the neck, and a gauze handkerchief is always 
worn double, and the largest that can be got ; it is 
pinned round the throat, as Mrs. Penn always did, 
and made to set out before like the chitterling of a 
man's shirt. The ladies here always wear a pin or a 
brooch, as the men do." She mentions two pairs of 
shoes sent to her by her aunt Richa from England ; 
" one pair, dark maroon, embroidered with gold, and 
the other, white, with pink." Miss Franks, soon after 
the war, was married to Lieut.-Gen. Sir Henry Johns- 
ton, and subsequently lived in England. The witty 
and sarcastic sayings of this Philadelphia belle have 
often been quoted and would fill a volume. She had 
an irrepressible fondness for repartee, and would hit 
a friend for want of a foe, as she did Sir Henry 
Clinton at a ball in New York. While conversing 
with her that ofiicer called to the musicians, " Give us 
' Britons, strike Home !' " " The commander-in-chief 
has made a mistake," exclaimed Miss Franks, " he 
meant to say, Britons, go home !" 2 

But her humor was not always of the most refined. 
The correspondence between her and Gen. Charles 
Lee, published in the United Slates Magazine for Jan- 
uary, 1779, somewhat extraordinary in its character, 
arose out of an assertion (at least it was so said by Gen. 
Lee) attributed to Miss Franks, that Gen. Lee " wore 
green breeches patched with leather." He said that 
they were " actually legitimate sherryvalies, such as 
his majesty of Poland wears (who, let me tell you, 
is a man who has made more fashions than all your 
knights of the Meschianza put together, notwith- 
standing their beauties)." In a note it is said that 
sherryvalies " are a kind of long breeches, reaching 
to the ankle, with a broad stripe of leather on the 
inside of the thigh, for the convenience of riding." 

Of a very different sort was the wit of another 
famous belle of that time, the accomplished Miss 
Vining. Miss Montgomery, in her " Reminiscences 
of Wilmington," says " her rare beauty and graceful 
form commanded admiration, and her intellectual 
endowments — a mind stored with historical knowl- 
edge and sparkling effusions of wit — entertained the 
literati and amused the gay. The singular fluency 
and elegance with which she spoke the French lan- 
guage, with her vivacity, grace, and amiability, had 
made her a general favorite with the French oflBcers, 
who praised her in their home correspondence to 
such a degree that her name became familiar in 
Paris, and the queen, Marie Antoinette, spoke of her 

2 " Anecdotes of the American Revolution." Garden. 



with enthusiasm to Mr. Jefferson, expressing a wish 
that she might some time see her at the Tuileries. 
The intimate friendships she formed during the Rev- 
olution were preserved after the peace, by a large 
correspondence with distinguished men. Lafayette 
appears to have been very much attached to her, and 
she wrote to him frequently until she died. For- 
eigners of rank rarely visited Wilmington, after Miss 
Vining's retirement from the society of Philadelphia, 
without soliciting an introduction to her. Among 
her guests were the Duke de Liancourt, the Duke of 
Orleans (Louis Philippe), and many others ; and it is 
related that Gen. Miranda, passing through the town 
in a mail-coach, at night, left his card for her at the 
post-office. The death of her brother, a man of 
eminent abilities, who was chosen at an early age a 
member of Congress from Delaware, was followed 
by a series of misfortunes, and, retiring from the 
gay world in the maturity of her charms, she passed 
the closing years of her life in poverty and seclu- 
sion." 1 

Miss Vining's opinion of the society of Philadelphia 
is expressed in a letter to Governor Dickinson in 
1783 (she was then twenty-five years of age), when 
she complained that Philadelphia had lost all its 
gayety with the removal of Congress from the city. 
" You know, however," she adds, " that here alone 
can be found a truly intellectual and refined society, 
such as one naturally expects in the capital of a great 

The bonnet called the " calash" came into notice 
about 1780, and is thus ridiculed in Rivington's Ga- 
zette of 1782 : 

"Hail I great Calash! o'erwhelming veil ! 

By all indulgent Heaven 
To sallow nymphs and maiden stale 

In sportive kindness giv'n; 
Safe hid beneath thy circling sphere, 

Unseen by mortal eyes, 
The mingled heap of grease and hair 

And wool and powder lies I 
From the bald head should pad and tSte, 

And loads of horsehair fall, 
Fear not the loose, disordered pate, 

Calash will hold them all 1" 

But the " calash" was only worn out-doors. The 
pyramid of hair now thrown back obliquely over the 
head, with light crisp curls at the base, was sur- 
mounted by figures of butterflies, caterpillars, coaches 
and horses, etc., in blown glass. These ridiculous or- 
naments, much in vogue in England at that time, were 
not very long the fashion. Friendly relations with 
France had had for one of its first results the intro- 
duction of the French modes in the ladies' dress. The 
coiffure of lofty feathers, invented by Mile. Bertin, 
the Paris milliner, and cherished by the unfortunate 
Marie Antoinette, was received with much favor by 
the Philadelphia ladies. This head-dress is thus de- 
scribed in 1781 : 

1 Grlswold's "Republican Court," note to p. 21. 

" A cap like a bat, 
Which was once a cravat, 

Fart gracefully plaited and pinned is ; 
Fart stuck upon gauze 
Resembles macaws, 

And all the fine birds of the Indies E 
But above all the rest, 
A bold, amazing crest 

Waves nodding from shoulder to shoulder I 
At once to surprise, 
And to ravish the eyes — 

To frighten and charm the beholder I 
In skirt, head, and feather, 
And wig altogether, 

With wonder and joy would delight ye I 
Like the picture I've seen 
Of th' adorable queen 

Of the beautiful, blest Otaheite !" 

The satirist does not inform us whether in Philadel- 
phia, as it did in Paris, this towering head-dress com- 
pelled the wearer, as she rode in her carriage, either 
to hang her head out at the door or to sit on the floor 
of the vehicle. 

Not every woman's hair furnished sufficient mate- 
rial for these elaborate pyramids ; besides, they proved 
very awkward at bedtime, and could not be arranged 
at a moment's notice, so it became the fashion for 
ladies to wear wigs. Whether they consented to the 
sacrifice of having their hair shaved, as did the men, 
or some artificial means were found by which they 
could wear these cumbrous appliances over their own 
hair, history telleth not. The use of wigs had long 
been discarded by the mass of the people, but was 
still the necessary appendage to a gentleman of fash- 
ion's dress. At home they got rid of it, and wore a 
velvet cap to protect their bald pates in winter and a 
linen cap in summer. Their velvet or fine broad- 
cloth coat was also laid aside, and the more comforta- 
ble dressing-gown of flowered damask donned. These 
coats were of all colors, and the dressing-gowns not 
always of damask. Worthy citizens were often seen 
on the streets during business hours clad in a flowing 
gown of calico. 

The return of peace having permitted the importa- 
tion of foreign goods, a fall in the prices was the 
natural consequence, and the ladies could indulge 
more freely in their taste for dress. Mr. Griswold, in 
" The Republican Court," page 268, says in a note, 
" During the period in which Philadelphia was the 
seat of government, on the arrival of the spring and 
fall ships from England, the pavements all along 
Front Street, from Arch Street to Walnut Street, 
were lumbered and scattered, before the doors of im- 
porters, with boxes and bales of English dry-goods, 
the clerks, apprentices, and subordinates of the mer- 
chants as busy as bees in their several vocations, some 
with sharp knives and claw-hammers ripping and 
breaking open the packages and cases, and others 
within-doors exhibiting the goods as salesmen, alto- 
gether displaying a pleasant bustle of rivalship and 
competition. The retailers, principally women, were 
hovering around, mingling with the men, and viewing 
with admiration the rich varieties of foreign chintzes, 



muslins, and calicoes of the latest fashions. All 
sums of money were computed in pounds, shillings, 
pence, and farthings, dollars and cents being unused 
denominations, except in the reports of Mr. Hamil- 
ton." " The first brilliant retail fancy dry-goods 
shop was opened about this time," says a writer in 
Hazard's Register, " by a Mr. Whitesides, as it was 
said, from London, in the true Bond Street style, at 
No. 134 Market Street, and the uncommon size of the 
panes of glass, the fine mull-mull and jaconet muslins, 
the chintzes and linens, suspended in whole pieces 
and entwined together in puffs and festoons, and the 
shopmen behind the counter, bowing and smiling, 
created for a time some sensation." 

It was no longer the time for such prices as Capt. 
McLane paid to William Nicolls, 1 in January, 1781, 
to wit: one pair boots, six hundred dollars; six and 
three-quarter yards calico, at eighty-five dollars per 
yard; six yards chintz, at one hundred and fifty dol- 
lars per yard ; four and a half yards moreen, at one 
hundred dollars per yard ; four handkerchiefs, at one 
hundred dollars apiece ; eight yards quality binding, 
at four dollars per yard ; one skein of silk, ten dol- 
lars. The total amount is $3144.50, but with the pro- 
viso, "If paid in specie, £18 10s." 

Mr. Watson tells a good story about the first fancy 
retail hardware-store, with bulk-windows, opened by 
James Stokes, in what had been the old Coffee- 
House, at the southwest corner of Market and Front 
Streets. " The buck-handled ' Barlow' penknives, the 
gilt and plated buttons, and the scissors, curiously 
arranged on circular cards (a new idea), and the bulk- 
windows lighted up at night (a new thing), was a 
source of great gratification to the boys and the 
country market-people lounging about with arms 
folded, on Tuesday and Friday evenings. One even- 
ing, among a group of gazers from about Conestoga, 
oneof them exclaimed to the others in Pennsylvania 
German (Dutch), ' Cook a mole har, cook do ! meiner 
sale!'" In German, "Guck' einmal her! Guck' da! 
Meine seele !" i.e., " Only look here ! Look at that ! 
My soul !" 

The trying times of the Revolution were now over. 
After the heroism displayed in the long struggle, 
wisdom must consolidate the new government, in 
order that the victory shall not be barren. The situ- 
ation was still critical, but we had Washington. 

The study of the manners and customs of a people 
is intimately connected with that of their political 
history. Thus we see the influence of the Quaker 
ideas of the early founders of Philadelphia strongly 
marked in the picture of Philadelphia society at the 
beginning of the eighteenth century. This influence 
is already greatly modified toward the middle of 
the century, by the increase of that part of the popu- 
lation which entertained views at variance with those 
of the Friends. Then came the Revolutionary period ; 

1 Watson's Annals, vol. ii. 

the Quakers were generally opposed to the war ; their 
influence wanes and disappears; they cannot resist 
the current of new ideas, and they are even compelled 
to compromise with the world ; still the minority they 
form in the community is of immense importance, — 
Quaker simplicity checks worldly extravagance and 
helps it to return from excess to moderation. But 
the Revolutionary period is a period of transition ; 
society is swayed by the alternate victories of conflict- 
ing elements and by foreign influences. The travel- 
ers who visited our shores during the war, and who 
speak with praise of our society, pay it a rare com- 
pliment; they must have instinctively recognized the 
characteristics, still undeveloped, of the American 
society of the future, the society born in peace, when 
with the turmoils of war had ceased the follies and 
exaggerations of an unsettled public taste. 

The rigidity of President Washington's principles, 
the examples of economy and simplicity to be found 
in his manner of living, the sweet influence of Mrs. 
Washington, and of such superior women as her 
friends, Mrs. Hamilton, Mrs. Knox, Mrs. Morris, Mrs. 
Stewart, Mrs. Powell, Mrs. Bradford, Mrs. Otis, and 
Miss Ross, gave an elevated tone to that society among 
whose brightest ornaments were that leader of taste 
and elegance and famous beauty, Mrs. Bingham 
(daughter of Thomas Willing), whom Mrs. Adams 
mentions as the " dazzling Mrs. Bingham," Miss 
Nancy Hamilton, Mrs. Madison, or, we should say, 
the fascinating Widow Todd, for she married Mr. 
Madison in 1794, and those favorite young friends of 
Washington, Miss Harriet Chew, who some years 
after married Charles Carroll, Jr., of Maryland, her 
sister, Mrs. Henry Philips, and their' elder sister, 
Peggy, who married Col. John Eager Howard, of 
Baltimore, in 1787. She then left Philadelphia, but 
came back to reside in 1796, while her husband at- 
tended Congress as a senator from Maryland. The 
Chew sisters were renowned for their beauty and 

Mrs. Washington's first levee in Philadelphia is 
thus spoken of by Miss Sally McKean in a letter to 
a friend in New York : " You never could have had 
such a drawing-room ; it was brilliant beyond any- 
thing you can imagine ; and though there was a 
great deal of extravagance, there was so much of 
Philadelphia taste in everything, that it must have 
been confessed the most delightful occasion of the 
kind ever known in this country." The "extrava- 
gance" mentioned by Miss McKean must have been 
little to the taste of the President, who attended his 
wife's levies as a private gentleman, much relieved at 
dispensing with the ceremonious forms of his official 
receptions, if we are to judge by his own words when 
he wrote to Mrs. Catherine Macaulay, " Our wishes 
are limited, and I think that our plan of living will 
now be deemed reasonable by the considerate part of 
our species. Mrs. Washington's ideas coincide with 
mine own as to simplicity of dress and everything 



which can tend to support propriety of character, 
without partaking of the follies of luxury and osten- 

Oliver Wolcott, on heing appointed auditor of the 
Treasury, in 1789, went to New York to see whether 
he would be able to maintain his family there on the 
emoluments of his office, and after due inquiry wrote 
to his wife : " By observation of the people in public 
service, and other respectable families, I am confident 
that no change in our habits of living will be in any 
degree necessary. . . . The example of the President 
and his family will render parade and expense improper 
and disreputable." When Congress was removed to 
Philadelphia rents rose and the markets became 
dearer. Mr. Wolcott wrote to his wife : " I have at 
length been to Philadelphia, and with much difficulty 
have procured a house in Third Street, which is a 
respectable part of the city. The rent is one hun- 
dred pounds, which is excessive, being nearly double 
what would have been exacted before the matter of 
residence was determined." 

That rents and the cost of living had increased was 
the natural consequence of the influx of population 
resulting from the transfer of the seat of government. 
Philadelphia was the great metropolis, to which came 
travelers and foreigners of distinction, impelled by 
curiosity to see this new republican government, or 
by admiration for the great man who had brought 
his country safely through a crisis such as no other 
people had ever known. Then there were the nu- 
merous officers of the government and their families, 
and many eminent citizens from other parts of the 
country, attracted, as by a magnet, by the presence of 
Washington and the Congress. More remarkable 
was the change which had taken place in the customs 
of the people between the time of the ending of the 
war and the return of Congress. The vagaries of 
fashion during that period have been recorded. 

An inventory of the wardrobe of Gen. Lord Ster- 
ling, published in the " American Historical Eecord," 
vol. i., shows that officer to have been remarkably 
well provided, as the total of garments was four hun- 
dred and twelve, among which were thirty-one coats, 
fifty-eight vests, forty-three pairs of breeches, thirty 
shirts, one hundred and nineteen pairs of hose, four- 
teen pairs of shoes, and four pairs of boots. It may 
show either how scarce were gloves, or how unusual 
was the wearing of them at this time, that Sterling 
had but two pairs of gloves, while he had fifty- 
four cravats and stocks. The list is without date, 
but probably it was taken in the Revolutionary war, 
as among the articles are a " blue cloth coat, vest, 
and breeches (regimental), laced with gold." Hats 
or caps are not mentioned in this inventory. The 
breeches were showy, being of various striking colors, 
and made of crimson and figured velvet; brown 
cloth, lined with red ; gay with gold lace ; white, 
claret, scarlet, and other varieties of colors. The 
coats were of cinnamon silk, blue cloth, brown 

mixed, white cloth, blue, claret, scarlet, brown, 
black, plum, gray, parson's gray, and other colors. 
The stockings were of various colors and material ; 
and the vests, in most cases, of the color of the coats 
and breeches. 

Lord Sterling was excusable, but fashion does not 
stop at lords ; it penetrated even into the agricultural 
districts of Pennsylvania. 

In the Freeman's Journal of July 10, 1782, a farmer 
complains against tie-wigs with tails, double rows of 
gilt buttons upon coats and waistcoasts, and laced and 
embroidered garments. He said, — 

" My eldest son, baring spent some weeks in the city, comes borne a 
mere baboon ; bair besprinkled as white witb powder as that of an old 
man of eighty years of age; a pair of ruffles reaching from his wrist- 
bands to the extremity of hiB nails; a strip of gold lace encircling his 
hat, with a button and loop of the same metal ; a huge stock on his 
neck, containing muslin enough to be his winding-sheet ; a suit of super- 
fine clothes, wrought out in a most glaring manner; and, to complete 
all, a long piece of cold iron, called a sword, dangling after him, — in 
imitation, I suppose, of some coxcomb he has seen in town." 

A few days afterward, "Priscilla Tripstreet" says, — 

" Umbrellas used by men ought to be taxed ; they are unfit for a man. 
Why should the men's silver, pinchbeck, and plaited shoe-buckles, 
weighing a pound each, be passed over in silence?" 

Even the Quakers were not free from the contagion ; 
not so much the men, for Brissot de Warville, in 1788, 
describes the Quaker dress as — 

"a round hat, generally white; cloth coat; cotton or woolen stockings ; 
no powder in their hair, which is cut short, and hangs around. They 
carry in their pockets a little comb in a case ; and, on entering a house, 
if the hair is disordered, they comb it before the first mirror they meet. 
They put on woolen stockings on the loth of September. It is an article 
of discipline, which extends to their clothing." 

But the Quaker ladies, if prohibited from imitating 
their worldly sisters and too timid to follow the ex- 
ample of pretty Dolly Payne, who, after the death of 
her Quaker husband, Todd, became one of the gayest 
belles of the republican court, nevertheless introduced 
many little improvements in their toilet that would 
have horrified the meetings of olden times. De War- 
ville says of them, — 

"The Quaker matrons wear the gravest colors, little black bonnets, 
and their hair simply turned back. The young women curl their hair 
with great care and anxiety, which costs them as much time as the most 
exquisite toilet. They wear little huts, covered with silk or satin. They 
are remarkable for their choice or the finest linens, muslins, and silks. 
Elegant fans play between their fingers. Oriental luxury itself would 
not disdain the linen they wear." 

Three years later the Duke de la Sochefoucauld- 
Liancourt made the sage reflection, " Ribbons please 
young Quakeresses as well as others, and are the great 
enemies of the sect." 

In The Times, by Peter Markoe, published in 1788," 
the poet says, — 

" Genius of Penn I couldst thou thy mansion quit 
And hear sound Sense abused by flimsy Wit; 
Couldst thou behold by fops thy habit mocked, 
And view the doubtful bat, half-flapped, half-cocked ; 
Locks which the useful comb have seldom known, 
And cheeks which glow with roses not their own ; 
Stays which distress the fashionable belle, 
Producing more than Nature's graceful swell, 



Whilst Art, the foe of genuine beauty, spreads 
Hoops from their waists and cushions on their heads — 
Struck by the scene less wicked than uncouth, 
How wouldst thou pity our degenerate youth 1" 

In " The Trifler," published in the Columbia Maga- 
zine for 1788, the writer makes a very sarcastic attack 
on the ladies. He says, — 

" A few years ago the happiness of the ladies depended as much on the 
display of their necks and the contraction of their waists as it now does 
upon their anterior projection and posterior plumpness. MisB Becky 
Catastrophe — a young lady of a diminutive size — has quitted a ball-room 
in the extremest mortification because her bishop was not as large as 
Mrs. McRump's,— a matron whose natural swell might have disclaimed 
the assistance of Art I And Mrs. Palace has scarcely excited so much 
envy by the elegance of her manners and the brilliancy of her equipage 
as by a voluminous craw, which, like the fortification of Gibraltar, serves 
indeed to keep everybody at a distance. But, then, the difficulty of con- 
veying provisions to the garrison iB equally great in both instances." 

In Carey's Herald, the year before, the disappear- 
ance of the queues is thus noted, — 

" There is said to be a rage for cropping. Many of our young men 
lately have discumbered themselves of queues and clubs, and even some 
beaux, lately arrived from London and Paris, have docked those ancient 
ornaments of the head, and adopted a style called d la mode oVAmSrique." 

This fashion came from France. The influence of 
that country on the Americans' style of dress was 
great after the Revolutionary war, and still more so 
during the French Revolution. The Parisian repub- 
licans looked to ancient Greece and Rome for sim- 
plicity of dress, and the skirts, flounces, and trains 
gave way to the simple flowing robe a Vantique, with 
short sleeves and the waist under the armpits. This 
radical change in the ladies' garments crossed the 
ocean in due time. Another grateful change was the 
total abandonment of powder and high head-dresses. 

In 1791 these changes had not all taken place, but 
an unbecoming fashion was thus satirized : 

" Fashion I mayst thou ever reign 
In each city, on each plain ! 
Lying rouge we now despise 1 
Fashions cease to scale the skies E 
Taste ordains a newer law, 
And establishes the Craw I 
# * # # * * 

" Beauty, with true lustre shine I 
All will own thee half divine ! 
If to reason thou shouldst bend, 
Truth will own thee Reason's friend. 
Study to preserved applause: 
Maids have bosoms — geese have craws /" 

The changes in male costumes were more impor- 
tant even than those in the dresses of the ladies : cloth 
of various colors was now used instead of silk, satin, 
and velvet, richly embroidered, which had been the 
previous style. The stiffening was taken out of the 
skirts of coats, the waists were shortened, and waist- 
coats were cut so short that they did not reach the hips. 
Breeches gradually vanished from view. Shoes were 
subject to experiment with various sorts of buckles, 
but were gradually lengthened into the Hessian boot, 
which, with pantaloons, were in full fashion before 
the year 1800. The broad black ribbon worn round 
the necks of gentlemen gave way to the cambric stock 

buckled behind, and to this followed the white linen 
cravat monstrous in its folds. The latter banished 
the rufQe from the shirt, and brought forward the 
standing shirt-collar. 

About this time the round hat, which had made its 
appearance in England even before the end of the 
war, came into general use, and the cocked hat was 
put aside as out of fashion ; it and the powdered hair 
and queue were, however, retained by the older men as 
part of a gentleman's full dress. 

Asbury Dickens says of Washington and others, — 

" He [Washington] was dressed in a full suit of the richest black vel- 
vet ; bis lower limbs in short-clothes, with diamond knee-buckles and 
black silk stockings. His shoeB, which were brightly japanned, were 
surmounted with large, square silver buckles. His hair, carefully dis- 
played in the manner of the day, was richly powdered and gathered be- 
hind into a black Bilk bag, on which was a bow of black ribbon. In his 
hand he held a plain cocked hat, decorated with the American cockade. 
He wore by his side a light, slender dress-sword, in a green shagreen 
scabbard, with a richly-ornamented hilt. ... At the head of the Senate 
stood Thomas Jeffersou r J n a blue coat, single-breasted, with large, bright, 
basket buttons, his vest and Bmall-clothes of crimson. . , . In the semi- 
circle which was formed behind the chair, and on either hand of the 
President, my boyish gaze waB attracted by the splendid attire of the 
Chevalier D'Yrujo, the Spanish ambassador — then the only foreign min- 
ister near our infant government. His glittering star, his silk chapeau- 
bras edged with ostrich feathers, his foreign air and courtly bearing, con- 
trasted strongly with those nobles of Nature'sforming who stood around 

Let us see, now, what a foreigner says of Washing- 
ton at home, and of Philadelphia. 

Viscount de Chateaubriand, who came to America 
in 1791, with the intention of seeking the Arctic 
northwest passage, visited Philadelphia to see Gen. 
Washington, for whom he brought a letter of intro- 
duction from Marquis Armand de la Rouairie, for- 
merly a colonel in the Continental army. He says 
of this city, in his " Voyage en Amerique" • " On ap- 
proaching Philadelphia we met some country-people 
going to market, some public conveyances and other 
very elegant carriages. Philadelphia seemed to me 
a handsome city. The streets are wide; some, lined 
with trees, cross each other at right angles in a regu- 
lar order from north to south and from east to west. 
The Delaware flows parallel to a street which follows 
its northern [western] shore. This river would be of 
considerable importance in Europe, but is not spoken 
of here. Its shores are low and but little picturesque. 

" Philadelphia, at the time of my voyage, did not 
extend to the Schuylkill. Only the land toward that 
stream was divided into lots, upon which a few iso- 
lated houses were built. The aspect of Philadelphia 
is cold and monotonous. Generally speaking, what 
is wanting in the cities of the United States is monu- 
ments, and above all, old monuments. ... A man 
landing, as I did, in the United States, full of enthu- 
siasm for the ancients, a Cato, who sought everywhere 
the rigidness of the early Roman manners, must have 
been greatly scandalized on meeting everywhere the 
elegance of dress, the luxury of equipages, the friv- 
olousness of conversations, the unequality of fortunes, 
the immorality of banking and gaming-houses, the 



noise of ball-rooms and theatres. In Philadelphia I 
might have believed myself in an English town. 
There was nothing to announce that I had passed 
from a monarchy to the republic. . . . My political 
disappointment doubtless caused the ill-humor which 
made me write the satirical note (in the " Essais 
Historique") against the Quakers, and even a little 
against all Americans. The appearance of the people 
in the streets of the capital of Pennsylvania was gen- 
erally agreeable, the men were very neatly clad, the 
women — above all the Quakeresses, with their uniform 
hats — exceedingly pretty." 

The enthusiastic young Frenchman's narrative of 
his interview with Washington is not without inter- 
est. " When I arrived in Philadelphia," he wrote, 
" the great Washington was not there, I was obliged 
to wait a fortnight ; at last he returned. I saw him 
pass in a coach which whirled rapidly past, dragged 
by four mettlesome horses. According to my ideas, 
Washington must necessarily be a Cincinnatus ; now 
Cincinnatus in a coach disturbed somewhat my re- 
public of the year of Rome 296. Could the Dictator 
Washington be any other than a rustic, urging his 
oxen with a goad, and holding the handles of his 
plow ? But when I went to carry my letter of recom- 
mendation to that great man, I found the simplicity 
of the old Roman. 

" A small house built in the English style, and re- 
sembling the other houses in its neighborhood, was 
the palace of the President of the United States ; no 
guards, not even footmen. I knocked, a young ser- 
vant girl opened the door. I asked her if the general 
was at home; she said that he was. I told her that 
I had a letter to hand him. The girl asked my name, 
difficult to pronounce in English, and which she did 
not succeed in retaining. She then told me gently, 
' Walk in, sir,' and she led the way through one of 
those narrow corridors which serve as vestibules in 
English houses, introduced me into the parlor and 
begged me to wait the general's coming. . . . After a 
few minutes' waiting the general entered. He was a 
man of tall stature, with a calm and cold rather than 
noble countenance (the engraved pictures of him are 
very resembling). I silently handed him my letter ; 
he opened it, looked at the signature, which he read 
aloud, exclaiming, ' What, from Col. Armand !' This 
was the name by which he was used to call him, and 
which the Marquis de la Rouairie had signed." 

Chateaubriand then went on to explain the object 
of his voyage. Washington, he says, made very few 
short remarks, sometimes in French, sometimes in 
English, and listened with a sort of astonishment. 
Perceiving this, the Viscount said, with warmth : 
" But it is less difficult to discover a northwest pas- 
sage than to create a nation as you have done, Gen- 
eral I" " Well, well, young man," replied Washington, 
deprecatingly, taking him by the hand. The young 
traveler, who was to make so great a name in French 
literature, was invited to dine with the President the 

next day. There were but half a dozen guests, and 
they talked principally about the French Revolution. 
On the following day Chateaubriand continued his 
voyage. He says of this solitary interview with 
Washington, " My name, probably, did not remain 
an entire day in his memory. I was happy, however, 
that his glance once fell on me! I have felt the 
warmth of it all my life. There is virtue in the 
glance of a great man." 

The parallel between Washington and Bonaparte 
which follows this remark, is one of the most appre- 
ciative ever written, of the character of the modern 
Cincinnatus. We will quote one paragraph: "Wash- 
ington was altogether the representative of the wants, 
the ideas, the lights and opinions of his time ; he 
wished the very thing he was called upon to do; 
hence the coherence and perpetuity of his work. 
This man who strikes us but little, because he is 
natural and of just proportions, has confounded his 
own existence with that of his country ; his glory is 
the common patrimony of growing civilization ; his 
fame rises like unto a sanctuary where flows an inex- 
haustible stream for the people.'' 

Chateaubriand's poetic fancy may have exaggerated 
the simplicity of the President's domestic arrange- 
ments ; there is no exaggeration in his appreciation 
of the man. 

Another traveler has given vent to his enthusiasm 
about Philadelphia in the following poetic effusion. 
It is taken from " Travels through America," a poem, 
by Michael Forrest, published in Philadelphia in 

" Hail, Philadelphia I I now behold 
Thy regularity, as I've been told; 
But more majestical thou dost appear — 
More grand, more regular, and far more clear — 
Than my ideas were of thy grand form, 
Or even now my pen can well inform I 
Governor Penn first its plan begun, 
In imitation of old Babylon. 
The streets are wide, and in a line direct ; 
The angles right, where they do intersect; 
The footway pav'd nicely, with brick and tiles, 
From north to south, nearly two English miles; 
And from both rivers 1 to the centre street, 
Named First, Second, and so on till they meet. 
That half alone, joining the Delaware, 
Is built out nearly to the Centre Square. 
The buildings shew no great variety, 
But the most pleasing regularity ; 
Void of extremes, the houses friendly join, 
Nor cottage low nor palace rouse the nine 
To sound the warmbling lyre. Upon the whole, 
From the Arctic to the Antarctic pole, 
View all the cities round this flying ball, 
Their commerce, shape, and regulations all ; 
Compare their climates and situation, 
Their buildings, cleanness, and navigation, 
Then judge impartially, and you will find. 
That Philadelphia most will please the mind." 

Dancing, as an amusement, was little resorted to 
during the war of independence, except while the 
British were in possession of the city. After the 

1 Schuylkill and Delaware, 



conclusion of hostilities the old City Dancing As- 
sembly was revived, and gave balls at their' own 
rooms. Balls, dancing-parties, dinners, and tea-par- 
ties were frequently given by the wealthy and fashion- 
able. De Chastellux thus describes the manner in 
which things were conducted at the assembly balls : 

" The assembly or subscription ball, of which I must give an account, 
may here he properly introduced. At Philadelphia, as at London, Bath, 
Spa, etc., there are places appropriated for the young people to dance in, 
and where those whom that amusement does not suit play at different 
games of cards. Cut at Philadelphia games of commerce are alone al- 
lowed. A manager, or rather a master of ceremonies, presides at these 
methodical amusements. He presents to the gentlemen and ladies — 
dancers — billets folded up, containing each a number. Thus Fate de- 
cides the male or female partner for the whole evening. All the dances 
are previously arranged, and the dancers are called in their turns. 
These dances, like the toasts we drink at table, have some relation to 
politics. One is called ' The Success of the Campaign;' another, * The 
Defeat of Burgoyne;' and a third, ' Clinton's Retreat.' The manager 
is generally chosen from among the most distinguished officers of the 
army. This important place is at present held by Col. Wilkinson, who 
is also clothier-general of the army." 

He alludes agaiD to the custom of having but one 
partner for the whole evening, a custom which, he 
thinks, prevails only in America. He says, " Dancing 
is said to be at once the emblem of gayety and of love. 
Here it seems to be the emblem of legislation and of 
marriage. Of legislation, inasmuch as places are 
marked out, the country dances named, and every 
proceeding provided for, calculated, and submitted 
to regulation ; of marriage, as it furnishes each lady 
with a partner, with whom she dances the whole 
evening, without being allowed to take another. . . . 
Strangers are generally complimented with the hand- 
somest women. The Comte de Dumas had Mrs. 
Bingham for his partner, and the Viscount de Noailles 
had Miss Shippen. Both of them, like true philoso- 
phers, testified a great respect for the manners of the 
country by not quitting their partners for the whole 
evening. . . . When music and the fine arts come to 
prosper at Philadelphia, when society once becomes 
easy and gay there, and they learn to accept of 
pleasure when it presents itself, without a formal 
invitation, then may foreigners enjoy all the advan- 
tages peculiar to their manners and government, 
without envying anything in Europe.'' 

De Chastellux describes an " American" dinner at 
the Chevalier de Luzerne's, and complains of the 
" absurd and truly barbarous practice, the first time 
you drink, and at the beginning of dinner, to call out 
successively to each individual, to let him know you 
drink his health." " One is ready to die with thirst," 
he says, "while he is obliged to inquire the names or 
catch the eyes of five and twenty or thirty persons. 
The partial or direct attacks when a guest asks per- 
mission to drink with you and passes you the bottle 
drives him to comical despair, the bottle is then 
passed to you, and you must look your enemy in the 
face, for I can give no other name to the man who 
exercises such an empire over my will. You wait 
till he likewise has poured out his wine and taken 

his glass. You then drink mournfully with him, as 
a recruit imitates his corporal in his exercise." 

The Prince de Broglie describes good-humoredly 
his first experience at tea-drinking in Philadelphia: 

" On the 13th of August, 1782," says he, " I arrived at Philadelphia, 
the already celebrated capital of a quite new country. M. de la Luzerne 
took me to tea at Mrs. Morris', wife of the Secretary of the Treasury of 
the United States. Her house is small, but well-ordered and neat; the 
doors and tables of superb, well-polished mahogany; the locks and 
andirons of polished braBs ; the cups arranged symmetrically; the mis- 
tress of the house good-looking and very gray. All was charming to 
me. I took some of the excellent tea, and would have taken more, I 
think, if the ambassador (M. de la Luzerne) had not kindly warned 
me at the twelfth cup that I must put my spoon across my cup when I 
wished to bring this warm-water question to an end. Said he, ' It is 
almost aB bad to refuse a cup of tea when it is offered to yon as it would 
be for the master of the house to offer you another when the ceremony 
of the spoon has indicated your intentions on the subject.' " 

The Duke de la Rochefoucault-Liancourt, who was 
in the United States in 1795, '96, '97, said,— 

"The profusion and luxury of Philadelphia on great days, at the 
tables of the wealthy, in their equipages, and in the dresses of their 
wives and daughters, are, as 1 Have observed, extreme. I have seen 
balla on the President's birthday where the splendor of the rooms and 
the variety and richness of the dresses do not suffer in comparison with 
Europe; and it must be acknowledged that the beauty of the American 
ladies has the advantage in comparison. . The young women of Phila- 
delphia are accomplished in different degrees, but beauty is general with 
them. They want the ease and fashion of French women, but the bril- 
liancy of their complexion is infinitely superior." 

But the duke is not so well satisfied with the hos- 
pitality, or rather the want of hospitality, of the 
Philadelphians. He tries to account for it thus : 

" The inhospitality to strangers, so often spoken of, is caused by the 
anxiety of the inhabitants to amass wealth. 

"This mercantile idea of necessity confines the man whom it influ- 
ences, and gives him no time or taste for the pleasures of society. 
What is justly called society does not exist in this city. The vanity of 
wealth is common enough. The rich man lives to show strangers his 
splendid furniture, his fine English glass, and exquisite china. But 
when the stranger has once viewed the parade in a ceremonious dinner, 
he is dismissed for some other new-comer who has not yet seen the mag- 
nificence of the house, nor tasted the old Madeira that has been twice 
or thrice to the East Indies; and then a new face is always more wel- 
come than an old one to him who has little to say to either. The real state 
of society in Philadelphia is included in invitations to great dinners and 
tea to all who arrive from Europe, — English, French, inhabitants of 
every country, men of every class and of every kind of character, phil- 
osophers, priests, literati, princes, dentists, wits, and idiots. The next 
day the idolized stranger is not known in the street, except that he be 
wealthy, especially in money, when, indeed, the politeness of the citi- 
zens of Philadelphia continues to exist as long as the stranger can 
purchase estates, and even beyond that term, for the homage paid to 
wealth is a worship in which all sects unite." 

Isaac Weld, who was in this country at the same 
time as the Duke de Liancourt, says, on the same 
subject, " It is a remark very generally made, not 
only by foreigners, but also by persons from other 
parts of the United States, that the Philadelphians 
are extremely deficient in hospitality and politeness 
toward strangers." He then proceeds to criticise 
Philadelphia society in the following severe terms : 

"Among the uppermost circles in Philadelphia pride, haughtiness, 
and ostentation are conspicuous, and it seems as if nothing could 
make them happier than that an order of nobility should be established 
by which they might be exalted ahove their fellow-citizens as mnch as 
they are in their own conceit. In the manners of the people in general 
there is a coldnesB and reserve— as if they were suspicious of some de- 



signs against them — which chills to the very heart those who come to 
visit them. In their private societies a trietease is apparent, near which 
mirth and gayety can never approach. It is no unusual thing in the 
genteelest houses to see a large party of from twenty to thirty persons 
assembled and seated around a room without any other amusement 
than what arises from the conversation — most frequently in whispers — 
that passes between the two persons who are seated next to each other. 
The party meets between six and seven in the evening. Tea is served 
with much form, and at ten — by which time moat of the company are 
wearied with having remained so long stationary — they return to their 
homes. Still, however, they are not strangers to music, cards, or 
dancing. Their knowledge of music, indeed, is at a very low ebb, but 
in dancing, which seems to be tbeir favorite amusement, they certainly 
excel. The women in general, while young, are very pretty, but by the 
time they become mothers of a little family they lose all their beauty, 
their complexions fade away, their teeth begin to decay, and they 
hardly look like the same creatures." 

Mr. Weld must have been introduced to a very 
different set from that visited by the travelers already 
quoted. Perhaps the satirical writer of an essay 
under the title of " The Trifler," published in the 
Columbian Magazine, in 1788, was right in his views 
of Philadelphia society when he said, — 

" In Philadelphia there are several classes of company, — the Cream, 
the New Milk, the Skim Milk, and the Canaille! ... In private parties 
and in public meetings, the distinctions here are accurately preserved. 
The Cream generally curdles' into a small group on the most eligible 
situation in the room. The New Milk seems floating between the wish 
to coalesce with the Cream and to escape from the Skim Milk ; and the 
Skim Milk, in a fluent kind of independence, laughs at the anxiety of 
the New Milk, and grows sourupon the arrogance of the Cream. Hence 
it is, sir, that our concerts and assemblies have lost their charms — for 
the superiority established on the one hand, and the mortifications felt 
on the other, seem to have produced this resolution; that never again 
shall the ears of Cream and New Milk listen to the same melody, or their 
feet caper. Notwithstanding these variances, however, each class 
closely imitates its immediate superior ; and from the conduct of one 
you may easily conceive the conduct of all. The marriage .week ie ap- 
propriated in the same manner. You drink punch with the bridegroom, 
and tea with the bride. Every lying-in furnishes you with a taste of the 
caudle and the sight of a bed ; and every tea-party consists in the same 
parade, whether your cake is handed on silver or Japan by a supercili- 
ous footman in lace, or a female apprentice in camlet." 

This writer further divides society into "the Dres- 
sers, the Eaters, the Drinkers, the Singers, the Tat- 
tlers, the Politicians, and the Dozers." 

Bulow, who was in this country in 1791, '92, '95, 
'96, must have met with some unpleasant adventure 
in Philadelphia, for nothing pleases him there. He 
speaks more like one smarting under some injury 
than as an impartial observer. It is a criticism de 
parti pris. He says, "Devouring immense quantities 
of flesh, the Americans call ' living rich !' . . . Their 
drink is for the most part brandy and water, and 
Madeira wine which is strongly adulterated with 
brandy." He illustrates the inhospitality of the 
Philadelphians by the story of an Englishman who 
burnt all his letters of recommendation because they 
procured him everywhere no other benefit than a 
glass of brandy and water. At public dinners they 
drink many toasts, " and for twelve persons on such 
occasions, you may always reckon sixty bottles of 
Madeira wine ! Judge in what a condition the people 
return home! In general, Americans make a point 
of honor to spend a great deal at taverns. But 
tavern-keepers do not make great fortunes, because 

there is so much ' toping on credit,' and ' the pay- 
ment- often fails.' . . . The tea parties were invented 
by Avarice, in order to see company cheap." They 
would be a good economical invention, if they were 
not " so stiff." " The greatest expense is for furni- 
ture, which must be all made of mahogany. Travel- 
ers have been often astonished to find handsome car- 
pets and mahogany tables and desks, — and in log 
houses, or rather huts I 

"... Luxury in North America turns upon ob- 
jects of vanity, never to the production of the fine 
arts." In proof of this the artistic Bulow informs 
us that " an Italian came to Philadelphia with some 
copies in plaster-of-Paris of some excellent statues ; 
but he could sell none of them, and went away again. 
A glass of grog, or of cold punch, is worth more to 
them than the most beautiful picture or statue." 
American architecture offends the good taste of this 
amiable foreigner, and he notes -with disgust that 
"among the new houses in Philadelphia the most 
fantastic caricature shapes are found." 

Luxury in house furnishing was, as a matter of 
course, a fit accompaniment of luxurious living. If 
the wealthy purchased fine imported furniture, home 
manufactures were daily increasing in importance, 
and the citizen of moderate means could introduce 
many improvements in his house. This was a field 
in which, despite Mr. Bulow's opinion, the native 
good taste of the Philadelphia ladies could display 
itself to advantage. European workmanship may 
send its most elegant productions to our markets, but 
the mere ability to purchase these and fill our rooms 
with them will not give us elegantly-furnished houses. 
It is the taste which presides in the selection and the 
arrangement that will make them pleasing to the 
eye. The charm attached to an American home, that 
je ne sais quoi which strikes the foreigner agreeably, 
is due neither to the English nor the French style of 
the furniture, but is peculiar to the American taste of 
the lady of the house. In no other city is this charm 
felt more than in Philadelphia. 

The fondness for carpets, so characteristic of the 
American housekeeper, — for even at this late day 
well-to-do familes in Europe do not find carpets in- 
dispensable to their comfort, — became general as soon 
as this article was appreciated. The first carpets in 
use attracted much attention in Philadelphia about 
1750, and in 1788 De Warville wrote as follows : 

" It already appears that they have carpets, — elegant carpets. It is a 
favorite taste with the Americans. They receive it from the interested 
avarice of their old masters, the English. A carpet in summer is an 
absurdity ; yet they spread them in this season, and from vanity. Thifl 
vanity exerciseB itself by saying that the carpet is an ornament. That 
is to say, they sacrifice reason and utility to show. 

" The Quakers likewise have carpets, but the rigorous ones blame this 
practice. They mentioned to me the instance of a Quaker from Carolina, 
who, going to dine with one of the most opulent at Philadelphia, was 
offended at finding the passage from the door to the staircase covered 
with a carpet, and would not enter the house. He said that he never 
dined in a house where there was luxury, ami that it was better to 
clothe the poor thau to clothe the earth." 



The character of the usual household furniture of 
the time is shown by the following list of articles be- 
longing to Dr. Franklin's estate, and advertised to be 
sold at auction in May, 1792, by Richard Footman, 
auctioneer : 

" Mahogany sideboards, dining-, card-, and Pembroke tables, mahog- 
any chairs, looking-glasses, clothes-presses, tea-urns, plated candlesticks, 
windsor-chairs, an elegant Bofa, chintz window-curtains, chest of drawers, 
a forte piano, a harpsichord, a copying-press, circular and snndry other 
coal-grates, Franklin stoves, china and qneensware, brass andirons, 
shovel and tongs, patent lamps, plated knives and forks, jack, etc., silver 
and plated ware, waiters, sugar canisters, snuffers and stand, a dish- 
cross, tea- and coffee-pots, cruet frame and castors, candlesticks, sauce- 
pans, butter-ladles, wine-strainers, funnels, tureen with handsome glass 
and elegant workmanship, milk-pots, etc. Also a sedan chair." 

Dr. Franklin, in the latter part of his life, had 
grown fat and heavy, and this sedan chair was his 
usual conveyance. 

Two other advertisements of sales, although dated 
in the beginning of the present century, describe the 
furniture in use during the latter part of the eigh- 
teenth century in the homes of wealthy citizens. The 
first, in April, 1803, was at the house of Thomas Ket- 
land, merchant, in Market Street, and comprised a 
drawing-room suite of French chairs, curtains, and 
sofa, in yellow damask ; one mahogany four-post bed- 
stead, with two hair mattresses and down feather-bed ; 
richly-painted cornices, and three window-curtains to 
match ; mahogany sideboard ; dining-tables ; mahog- 
any commodes ; tambour and satin-wood secretaries ; 
one lady's writing-desk, painted; mahogany wash- 
hand stand ; fire-screens ; wine-coolers ; one upright 
fine-toned mahogany forte piano, with stops, by Stod- 
dard ; one large, superb wardrobe, with writing-desk, 
drawers, closets, etc. ; French Sevres tea-china in 
sets ; one pair vases, superbly painted ; groups of sev- 
eral figures and hyacinths, pleatue, French ; a very 
handsome French clock, of the finest workmanship ; 
a pair of French bronzed and gilt andirons ; sundry 
prints and pictures ; one elegant painting of dead 
game ; Derbyshire ornaments ; Italian marble busts ; 
one large set of cut-glass dinner-ware; girandoles; 
dessert-dishes, etc. ; a large glass hall-lamp ; one pair 
richly-gilt tripods ; gilt brackets, etc. ; dinner-sets of 
English earthenware; a large steel grate, with a va- 
riety of other articles. 

The second, published in the United States Gazette 
of Nov. 16, 1805, is still more important as describing 
the household furnishings of one of the leaders of 
society, of which Wanzey, in 1794, made the follow- 
ing note in his diary : 

" June 8. — I dined this day with Mrs. Bingham, to whom I had letters 
of introduction. I found a magnificent house and gardens in the best 
English style, with elegant and even superb furniture. The chairs of 
the drawing-room were from Seddons, in London, of the neweBt taste, — 
the backs in form of a lyre, with festoons of crimson and yellow silk ; the 
curtains of the room, a festoon of the same ; the carpet, one of Moore's 
most expensive patterns. The room was papered in the French taste, 
after the style of the Vatican at Rome. In the garden was a profusion 
of lemon-, orange-, and citron-trees, and many aloes and other exotics." 

The advertisement referred to contained a very full 
catalogue of the principal articles of furniture and 

plate belonging to William Bingham, which were to 
be sold at auction by A. Pettit & Co. In the draw- 
ing-room were a looking-glass seven feet six inches 
by five feet, a glass chandelier, four girandoles, four 
gilt candlesticks, three sofas, eight sets of blue satin 
window-curtains with gilt cornices, two gilt branch 
candlesticks, six large arm-chairs, two fire-screens, 
with shovel, tongs, and fender, carpet, with vases, 
figures, and artificial flowers. The parlor was fur- 
nished with ten looking-glasses, two rush-bottom set- 
tees, ten arm-chairs, and ten single chairs, dining- 
tables, mantel ornaments, Venetian blinds, and one 
harpsichord. The dining-tables probably were placed 
there for convenience. The furniture of the dining- 
room was a mahogany sideboard, wine-cooler, twenty- 
four mahogany chairs with morocco bottoms, brass 
and iron fenders, shovels, tongs, and bellows, with 
chandeliers, girandoles, brass lamps with reflectors, 
shade lamps, and a very large assortment of china, 
dinner, and tea sets, with bottles, decanters, and glass- 
ware. In the ball-room — probably placed there for 
convenience and sale — was a mahogany bedstead, 
seven feet square, with canopy, curtains, and mattress 
complete. The chambers were supplied with bed- 
steads with damask curtains, chairs with damask 
stuffed bottoms, yellow and pink chairs, and sofas 
with silk bottoms, and bureaux in japan, gold, and 
mahogany. There were figures in all the rooms, and 
in one of them a full-length portrait of Mrs. Siddons 
as the " Grecian Daughter," with vases and other 
ornaments. Silver plate was composed of tureens, 
vases, dishes, candlesticks, waiters, urns, bowls, gob- 
lets, trays, forks, spoons, etc., and weighed nearly two 
thousand ounces, in addition to which were several 
articles of plated ware. In the hall were twelve 
windsor-chairs, pedestals of composition and marble, 
with busts of Voltaire and Rousseau, three busts of 
Franklin, bronze and composition figures, two marble 
medallions in gilt frames, and a dial on a composi- 
tion pedestal. In the library were three mahogany 
bookcases, a secretary, a copying-machine, four bronze 
figures, two urns, two busts, and a centrepiece placed 
on the top of the bookcases, with a costly collection 
of paintings and prints. 

This list helps us to picture to our minds the grand 
apartments so often filled with a galaxy of beauties, 
in which the central figure was the charming hostess, 
acknowledged by all the queen of elegance, the rooms 
in which Washington, the Adamses, Jefferson, Mad- 
ison, Hamilton, and other public men, met the Chews, 
the Mifnins, the Willings, and mingling with the gay 
crowd of ladies, forgot for a while the cares of state. 

The number of equipages increased with the luxury 
of the times. William Priest, musician, " late of the 
theatres of Philadelphia, Baltimore, and Boston," in 
his " Travels in the United States of America," — 
commencing in 1793 and ending in 1797, — says, 
"There are eight hundred and six two and four- 
wheel pleasure carriages in the city. The population 



does not exceed fifty thousand inhabitants. This is 
a proof of the luxury of the people." 

Weld describes with great minuteness the equipages 
which he saw in Philadelphia : 

" The carriages made use of in Philadelphia consist of coaches, char- 
iots, chaises, coachees, and light wagons, the greater part of which are 
built in Philadelphia. The equipages of a few individuals are extremely 
ostentatious. Nor does there appear in any that neatness and elegance 
which might be expected among a set of people who are desirous of 
imitating the fashions of England, and who are continually getting 
models over from that country. The coachee is a carriage peculiar, I 
believe, to America. The body of it Is rather longer than that of a 
coach, but of the same shape. In the front it is left quite open down 
to the bottom, and the driver sits on a bench under the roof of the car- 
riage. There are two seats in it for the passengers, who sit in it with 
their faces to the horses. The roof is supported by small props, which 
are placed at the corners. On each Bide of the door, above the panels, 
it is quite open ; and, to guard against bad weather, there are curtains, 
which are made to let down from the roof, and fasten to buttons on the 
outside. There is also a leathern curtain, to bang occasionally between 
the driver and passengers. The light wagons are on the same con- 
struction, and are calculated to hold from four to twelve people. The 
only difference between the small wagon and the coachee is that the 
latter is better furnished, bas varnished panels, and doors at the side. 
The former lias no doors, but the passengers scramble in the best way 
they can, over the seat of the driver. The wagons are used universally 
for stage-coaches." 

Meanwhile, the ever-changing fashions continued 
to turn the heads of the belles and beaux, and to 
inspire the satiric muse. 

The Columbian Magazine of 1792 has the following : 

" Fashion, intent our wonder to excite, 
Seems nature for the marvelous to slight ] 
Now on the head the Bonnet soars, designed 
To show a towering, bold, ambitious mind 1 
Now swells the Petticoat, a spacious round, 
And now in length three yards or more are found 1 
Teles like the Titan's heaven appear to scale 
As Fashion's arbitrary laws prevail 1 
The Stay's sharp peak with star-like lustre glows, 
And the paste Buckle glitters on the toesl 

" These wanderings of Taste we may excuse, 
Assisting by politeness Beauty's views 1 
Powder! behold thy cheering, cleanly aid, 
By Nature's tresses amiably displayed 1 
But may no curling-tongs e'er heat that brain, 
Where cool Discretion should in triumph reign. 

"Still will those Follies frame tyrannic laws, 
Now dealing in Cork Hips and now in Craws. 
Must Delicacy to thy power submit? 
"Wilt thou yield ample scope for sneering Wit? 
The fair shall never Buffer in my verse, 
And simply thus a cynic's thoughts rehearse : 
'There was a time, perhaps that time remains, 
When feathers gave the tone to female brains. 
Each whim the fair with readineBS embraced, 
Since to be flighty was a proof of taste. 
There was a time, attached to liberal arts, 
When ladies soothed our minds and cheered our hearts. 
By moderate arts, ye fair, preserve your reign. 
Prudence alone your empire can retain. 
From delicacy, hope, sincere applause, 
Tour hearts men wish to gain, but slight your craws r " 

The fashions for men underwent some change about 
this time. 

Oswald's Gazetteer for September, 1792, specifies 
the gentlemen's dress for balls, and declares that 
shoe- and knee-buckles are abolished. 

" Two yards of black ribbon for the shoes, and an equal quantity for 
the knees, are used instead of buckles. The breeches are very tight. 
Two watch-chains and trinkets are worn. The hair is powdered, 
frosted, and perfumed. The cape is of different color from the coat. 
Muslin and cambric are worn about the neck ; and the genteel beau is 
particularly genteel when he wears a tamboured shirt." 

There was still some elegance in this, but the time 
was not far when Philadelphians, in no small num- 
ber, would imitate the absurd fashions and coarse 
manners of the Parisian sans-culottes. The Americans 
had seen, with sympathetic interest, the incipiency of 
the French Revolution : it was the struggle of right 
against abuse; the Frenchman of 1789 did but follow 
the example of the American colonies. French peo- 
ple and French ideas were popular here, as it was but 
natural they should be, and we have mentioned in 
these pages the introduction of fashions d, la republi- 
caine ; but affairs in France had taken a turn unex- 
pected by the patriots, who demanded but the " rights 
of man ;" a bloodthirsty mob had taken control of 
the government; Louis XVI., the honest king, who 
had befriended the struggling colonies, had been be- 
headed in the name of liberty ; his beautiful queen 
also had perished on the scaffold ; the hideous guillo- 
tine was decimating the nobility of France, it did not 
spare the families of those gallant gentlemen who had 
fought under Washington, and yet the wild ravings 
of the followers of Robespierre found an echo in our 
streets. The bonnet rouge made its appearance. 

" No such ' frenzy,' to use Mr. Jefferson's favorite 
expression, has ever since been known in America. 
. . . Politeness was looked upon as a sort of lese 
republicanisme ; the common forms of expression in 
use by the sans-culottes were adopted by their Amer- 
ican disciples ; the title citizen became as common 
in Philadelphia as in Paris, and in the newspapers it 
was the fashion to announce marriages as partner- 
ships between citizen Brown, Smith, or Jones, and 
the citess who had been wooed to such an association. 
Entering the house of the President, citizen Genet 
(French ambassador) was astonished and indignant 
at perceiving in the vestibule a bust of Louis XVI., 
whom his friends had beheaded, and he complained 
of this 'insult to France.' At a dinner, at which 
Governor Mifflin was present, a roasted pig received 
the name of the murdered king, and the head, sev- 
ered from the body, was carried round to each of the 
guests, who, after placing the liberty cap on his own 
head, pronounced the word 'Tyrant!' and proceeded 
to mangle with his knife that of the luckless creature 
doomed to be served for so unworthy a company. 
One of the Democratic taverns displayed as a sign a 
revolting picture of the mutilated and bloody corpse 
of Marie Antoinette." 1 

The Parisian beaux of the time were called musca- 
dines. Their style of dress was adopted by their imi- 
tators in Philadelphia. A writer in Oswald's Gazet- 
teer, of January, 1795, describes them, as follows : 

1 Griswold, " The Republican Court" 



"The sweet muscadines have the queue and the twist, the parallelo- 
gramic waistcoat and the waistcoat circular, the bolstered neckcloth 
and the cravat puddingless [although almost everybody wears some- 
thing of a puddingj. They have the cape velvet, the cape cloth, the 
cape up and the cape down, the slash sleeve and the close sleeve, the 
Louden broadcloth aud the Paris narrow back, the lapelle and the sin- 
gle breast, the covered queen's nipple, dentil's head, and metal button, 
the culotte long, the culotte short, and the bow." 

In "The Trifler," published in the Columbian 
Magazine, it is said, speaking of the divisions in so- 
ciety : 

" Florio, who is a type of the whole, has fretted himself into a fever 
that almost cost him his life because a modest tailor has made a pair of 
yellow breeches decently large for his limbs, and has not carried the 
cape of his coat as high as the crown of bis hat." 

But the best hit was in the Philadelphia Minerva, 
— " The Sunday Parade/' a most delicious ode. In this 
effusion the writer says, — 

"Thus all our modern belles and beaux 
Are swaddled in such loads of clothes 

As proves them ornameutal gluttons. 
Lord I what a dash does Mr. Derame cut, 
In his superlative, unrivaled strut, 

Besplatteved with a peck of I'uttone! 
His frizzled friends, this charming weather, 
Have ventured out to air their leather — 
Some staggering beneath as huge a sack 
As Banyan's Pilgrim carried on his back ! 

Sure they should strut with shanks of toughest steel 
To prop the massy bundles which they wear; 

Tor 'tis a sorry sight, my friend, 

To see their charming little spindles bend 
Beneath such monstrous packages of hair, 

Crammed in with tallow and with Indian meal — 
Some bungling barber's expeditious work, 
Who took no pains to decorate their pork t 

" Who pace with strange, exotic bags, 
Put on unseemly o'er their rags ; 

Aud breeches buttons round their necks — 
Gaping with huge and ghastly snout, 
And whitewashed eyes turned inside out I 

"the men. 
"•Most ladies lose their hearts, 

Enchanted by the power of clothes — 
By silks and satins, wigs and crapes, 
Superbly hung on muffled apes, 
And bolsters tied below their nose !' 

"the ladies. 
" ' But it excites my wonder more 
To see them wear their watch before, 
Like warming-pans, of monstrous size!" 1 

These follies, however, were limited to a certain 
class of young men. Sober-minded gentlemen clung 
to the becoming old style. 

A writer in Oswald's Gazetteer of January, 1795, 
describes fashions in polite assemblies. He speaks of 
the turban, the " shot dress/' and the ruffled sleeves. 
Proceeding further, he speaks of— 

"the satin waist, with trails of mull loose, and jaconet te, gauze, crape, 
and light stopper. Then there's the hair up, the hair down, the frieze 
and the frizzles, the straight, and the curled. There's the Spanish 
leather, the Danish kid, the tamboured and plain slipper, and Boman 
sandals with English flat heels, and perch sky-scraper heels." 

Wanzey, in 1796, said, — 

"At the theatre ladies wear small bonnets of the English fashion, 
some of chequered straw, some full-dressed, with caps, and a very few 

in the French style, — the younger ladies with their hair flowing in ring- 
lets on their Bhoulders. 

"The gentlemen bad round hats, coats with high colors (cut quite In 
the English fashion), and many coats of striped silk." 

Washington never changed his style of dress, the 
plain black velvet suit already mentioned. At his 
inauguration, John Adams wore a full suit of light 
drab, with loose cuffs. He also wore wrist-ruffles. 
His hair was powdered and tied up in a bag. 

William McKoy, speaking of the inauguration of 
John Adams, in 1797, gives a very full description of 
the Marquis D'Yrujo, the Spanish minister, who mar- 
ried the amiable Sally McKean. He says, "He was 
of middle size, of round person, florid complexion, 
and hair powdered like a snow-ball ; dark-striped silk 
coat, lined with satin ; white waistcoat, black silk 
breeches, white silk stockings, shoes and buckles. He 
had by his side an elegant-hilted small-sword, and his 
chapeau, tipped with white feathers, under his arm." 

Jefferson, Mr. McKoy says, was dressed in a long 
blue frock coat, single-breasted, and buttoned down 
to the waist; light sandy hair, very slightly powdered, 
and queued with black ribbon a long way down his 

One more poetical squib. They give us not only 
the caricature of the fashions, but specimens of the 
satiric wit of the time. 

In Carey's Recorder, in 1798, was published the 
following : 

"The Address op &. vert TTglt Lady to her ' Uqlt,' — a Hideous 
Instrument which the Women op Fashion wear Round their 

"Gome, bleat invention, cornel In kindness screen 
This old, yet fruitful, source of all my woes! 
Draw round my amber eyes thy case of green, 
And wrap in night this never-ending nose ! 
In numerous blessings crown her useful head, 

Who found a remedy for ills so great — 
Ills that not Spanish wool, not e'en white lead, 

Could cure, remove, diminish, or abate; 
A mouth whose wide embrace both ears inclose ; 

A nose of ruddiest hue, Bublime and high ; 
A chin on which a tankard might repose ; 

And the dull leerings of a blinking eye — 
All seek for safety in the dark'ning veil — 
All fly for rescue from the critic's stare— 
The red, the dark, the purple, and the pale, 
And the long, meagre, furrowed face of Care I" 

Much has been said of the freaks of fashion and 
the submission to its behests shown by both sexes. 
Yet there has ever been a marked difference in the 
results of this submission. The ladies, prompt to ac- 
cept any new style that might enhance their personal 
charms, have sometimes been deluded into adopting 
some ridiculous mode, but it was short-lived, and disap- 
peared so soon as the experiment was made and proved 
it to be a failure. The forms of their head-dress were 
often changed, yet powder remained long in use ; it 
was abandoned and taken up again. Why ? Because 
powdered hair was becoming, though not natural and 
causing much trouble and loss of time in the dressing. 
So with their wearing apparel ; it was more or less 
ornamented, beflounced, and cut in fanciful shapes ; 



its return to simplicity, attempted at different periods, 
was never lasting. The taste for ornament is inborn 
with women ; even the uncivilized savage maiden will 
deck her person and decorate her scant dress with 
feathers, beads, or bright-colored seeds and shells. It 
is with all the sex an unsatiable thirst for the beauti- 

Not so with the men ; they have no sooner attained 
a style of dress that makes them presentable than 
they cast it off for something hideous or ridiculous. 
The dress worn by our Revolutionary fathers, especi- 
ally at and after the end of the war, had a manly ele- 
gance unequaled at any other period. It was as far 
removed from the stiffened skirts, laces, and feathers, 
in which the fops of an earlier period delighted, as it 
is from the uniform ugliness of the garments of the 
present generation, whose only merit is in being com- 
fortable, the love of ease having become the charac- 
teristic of modern society. The ladies, kind souls ! 
have made so many concessions that they are not 
shocked at the sight of a beau in a short sack coat, 
tight pantaloons, and diminutive round hat, puffing 
away at the inevitable cigar. 

Can any one, gifted with the faintest artistic taste, 
after looking at the pictures of the Washingtons, the 
Adamses, the Jeffersons, and their contemporaries, re- 
alize the fact that to their imposing costume suc- 
ceeded the dress we now describe ? The coats were 
of the fashion called in modern times " swallow-tail," 
but much more broadly cut in the skirts, which com- 
menced about the region of the hips in front, extended 
in a sloping line backward, and were cut off square 
in the back, so as to reach about to the bend of the 
leg. The lappels in front were prodigiously broad. 
The collar rose up on the sides as high as the bottom 
of the ears, and was continued in the back of the same 
width, and then it was doubled and turned over all 
round with a fold quite as broad. The cravat was 
wide and high, an oval fence around the neck, suffi- 
ciently wide and deep to allow the man to sink his 
chin into it. The ends were brought down in front, 
kerchief fashion, and knotted. The cravat was in- 
variably made of light silk or linen, muslin, except 
occasionally in India importations, not having come 
into use. There was no shirt collar. Vests were 
shortened, and reached no lower than the well-defined 
region of the waist. Sometimes they were single- 
breasted, cut low, with small, straight collars, and 
allowed the display of the frills, or they were double- 
breasted, and finished with broad lappels. Another 
style was tight about the neck, covering the whole 
shirt except the collar, and extending from the neck 
no more than half a foot to the waistbands of the 
high pantaloons. 

Breeches were not entirely banished, especially in 
the most polite society. They were in use for parties 
and balls, but they were superseded for ordinary 
business, and for men's wear generally except for 
party purposes, by trowsers and pantaloons. The 

latter went through strange mutations of cut and 
shape, — were sometimes closely fitted to the limbs, and 
called "tights;" at other times they were baggy and 
bulging. Sometimes they were tight at the waist and 
very broad at the bottoms ; sometimes they were tight 
at the knee, and spread out like funnels toward the 
ankles. Again they were tight at the ankles, and 
loose and broad at the knee. They went through 
other changes, among which might be mentioned 
plaits at the sides and waist, tucks at the bottom, and 
other fantasies. 

Fops clung for some time to perukes, powdered 
heads, and three-cornered hats. Elderly gentlemen 
of the old school were also loath to give them up, and 
as late as 1800 even wore the large wigs made of gray 
or white horsehair. When they gave up these, they 
consoled themselves in the use of the queue or pigtail, 
formed by twisting and tying the natural hair behind, 
below the back of the neck. But the middle class 
followed the French republican fashion, and cut their 
hair a la Titus, — a shock head from the forehead to 
the back of the neck. At a later period another 
French style was introduced ; the hair combed down 
the forehead to within a short distance from the eye- 
brows, and cut straight across, was allowed to grow 
long on the sides and back of the head, covering the 
ears, era oreilles de chien, as may be seen in the por- 
traits of Gen. Bonaparte at the time of the campaign 
in Italy. 

The beard during all this time was banished from 
good society. The cheeks, upper and lower lip, and 
throat, were carefully and laboriously deprived of 
their natural growth of beard once, twice, or thrice a 
week, and, among the highly fashionable, every day. 
No gentleman could present himself with decency at 
church or at the theatre, or visit his friends and ac- 
quaintances, unless he was most scrupulously shaved, 
and was able to present a clean and respectable ap- 

The hats had narrow brims, and the crown tapered 
off toward the top, not unlike the Tyrolese hat, but 
less elegant. They were made of beaver, or of the 
skins of the muskrat, the otter, and the raccoon, these 
furs being used for body and all in the finer hats, or 
the fur was felted upon wool ; coarser hats were made 
entirely of wool. The various furs were also used in 
the making of caps, or these were made of cloth ; 
there were various shapes of caps. 

As long as stockings continued to be an outside 
portion of the dress of gentlemen they were objects 
of care and sometimes of pride. Upon occasions of 
ceremony, where elegance of costume was looked for, 
the stocking was of silk, — white among young men 
who coveted distinction on account of the observance 
of the proprieties, and black among elderly gentle- 
men who commanded respect on account of age or 
social position. For persons in moderate circum- 
stances, and those who could make no claim beyond 
that of being useful members of the community, the 



stockings were of yarn, — gray, blue, or brown, accord- 
ing to the fancy of the good wife who knitted them. 
Striped yarn stockings, a la mode de Paris, were also 
worn with the short pantaloons not reaching to the 
ankles. Low shoes with metal buckles remained in 
the fashion until 1800, when they were succeeded by 
high boots, which were worn with the short breeches. 
A curious fact is that, until that time, there was no 
distinction made by shoemakers between the right 
and left feet. About 1800 William Young, who lived 
at No. 128 Chestnut Street, claimed to have intro- 
duced this valuable improvement. His advertise- 
ment gives the following summary of fashions : 

" Plover and snipe toes, cock and hen toes, goose and gander toes, duck 
and drake toes,, gosling toes, hog and bear snouts, ox and cow mouths, 
shovel and stick nose, and others too tedious to mention. 


" Suwarrows, cossacks, hussars, carrios, double-tongues, fire-buckets, 
Bonapartes, greaves, Swiss, hunting, walking, full-dress, York." 

Some time after this announcement, Mrs. Young 
promised that she would — 

" by the direction of ber husband, cause her Bex to have right and 
left feet, — to stand and walk with facility and pleasure. Why should 
they not be at ease as well as the gentlemen ? It is a wonder that some 
one or more cordwainerB in thoir line have not come forward in the ex- 
ecution of an object so extraordinary, expedient, and exquisite in its 
nature. All colored silks and Ratios, as well as fancy patterns, kid do., 
and morocco do,, will be procured.'* 

John Bedford, of No. 73 South Second Street, in 
1800, took out a patent for " iron-bound boots and 
shoes." He said that they were made — 

" on a plan entirely new, equally fit for men, women, and children. He 
haB the pleasure of Baying that this invention is considered by some of 
the best judges in this city to be one of the most economical evor offered 
to the consideration of the public, for it not only saves immense labor, 
but material also, both of which are well known to be of serious conse- 
quence in this country." 

Bedford said that in the old way of making shoes, 
one pair a day was as much as conld be made by one 
man, and that few men could make more than four 
or five pair a week. But by his new plan a man and 
a boy could make from six to ten pairs a day, so that 
the improvement would be a vast saving in time and 
leather, and would be an immense economy to the 
people of the United States. 

While on the subject of shoes, it may be well to 
note that such a thing as our modern blacking or 
" shoe-polish" was unknown. Day & Martin's liquid 
blacking was first manufactured in England in 1801, 
and Lee & Thompson began its manufacture in New 
York in 1803. The first blacking which was manu- 
factured in Philadelphia was made, some time later, 
by William Stubbs, Stubbs & Allen, and Robert 
Cochran. Before this "Blackball," so called, was 
the article used upon boots. It was composed of 
lampblack, mutton suet, or bayberry tallow, and not 
unfrequently of the greasy mixture which the tanners 
call " dubbing." Whatever might be the labor used 
with this mixture, there was still danger of its rub- 
bing off upon the clothing of the person coming near 

the boots or shoes upon which it had been used. La- 
dies walking with gentlemen arm-in-arm, or dancing 
with them at parties, were particularly exposed to 
this nuisance ; and when the modern shoe-blacking 
came into use, the benefit of it was universally recog- 

Jewelry, of which the ladies made a brilliant dis- 
play, was but little worn by men. Watches were 
generally of silver and of very large size ; they were 
worn outside. A French fashion, which prevailed 
only among a few, was the wearing of two watches, 
one on each side, with a steel or silver chain, from 
which dangled a bunch of watch-keys, seals, and 
bright-colored tropical seeds set like precious stones. 

What a comical picture there is in the following 
reminiscences of a writer quoted by Mr. Watson : 

" The coat I wore was such as fashion enjoined. The skirts were long 
and narrow, like a swallow's tail, — two-thirds, at least, of the whole 
length ; the portion above the waist composed the other tbird. The 
waist was directly beneath the shoulders. The collar was a huge roll 
reaching above the ears, and there were two lines of brilliant buttons 
in front. There were nineteen buttons in a row. The pantaloons (over 
which I wore the boots) were of non-elastic corduroy. It would be un- 
just to the tailor to say that they were fitted like my skin, for they sat 
a great deal closer. When 1 took them off, my legs were like fluted 
pillars grooved with the cords of the pantaloons. The bat that sur- 
mounted this dress had a three-quarter-inch rim and a low, tapering 
crown. It was circled by a ribbon two inches wide." 

Another writer, who, about 1850, gave his reminis- 
cences of forty or fifty years before, said, — 

" When I was a child the ladies wore shoulder-straps to their petti- 
coats, but the men none to their breeches. The consequence was that 
gentlemen had frequently to adjust their waistbands. Learned judges 
standing up to charge a jury, and venerable clergymen preaching in 
the pulpit, I was accustomed to Bee hitching up their small-clothes with 
one hand, while with the other they tucked the lower portion of a fine 
ruffled shirt between the waistband and flaps of an ancient vest. This 
was necessary to prevent the exposure of a double linen ruffle below 
the waistcoat, extending horizontally from hip to hip. This horizontal 
fold of white linen, — not always exactly white, however, — in connection 
with the long, perpendicular ruffle of the bosom, formed a sort of in- 
verted cross, of greater dimensions than the one paraded on a Roman 
bishop's back. The fashionable breeches of my early days were but a 
few inches longer than the thigh-bone of the wearer, and were buckled 
tight below the knee-pan, often to an obstruction of a free circulation 
of the blood, and productive of such itching as made a gentleman glad 
to unbuckle hiB knees when in his own dwelling in the company of his 
family alone. 

"Was such a dress in itself desirable? Yet I remember when the 
male sex began to use suspenders, and they were ridiculed who first 
wore shoulder-straps. They were said foolishly to affect a female mode 
of dreas. But why was it not well to keep breeches in their place by 
suspenders, instead of hitching them up perpetually by the hands?" 

As we stop on the threshold of the nineteenth 
century, we will, for the benefit of the ladies, peep 
into the mysteries of fashion in the next half-dozen 

In 1800 the walking-dresses for ladies were in the 
style called a la grecque, — a closely-fitting garment of 
very plain make, with the waist as high up as it could 
be made ; the bosoms, cut square, were gathered in 
surplice style, and the neck and shoulders were pro- 
tected by a muslin or gauze handkerchief, crossed in 
front, and forming a point behind. The bonnet fitted 
as close to the head as a cap, and the hair was twisted 



or turned up high on the back of the head, while, in 
front, it was combed straight over the forehead, almost 
to the eyebrows. The evening dress, while preserving 
the style, was more elaborate ; instead of the hand- 
kerchief, a ruffle was worn round the neck of the gar- 
ment, descending in front, and leaving the neck and 
shoulders bare. The hair was frizzled in front, and 
an ostrich plume fell with a graceful curve over the 
top-knot. Whether for walking or evening, the 
sleeves were short, and gathered up with a band, 
above the elbow, leaving the arms bare. 

A very popular head-dress for street wear in the 
summer time was made of muslin or some other 
light material. It surmounted the head like a cap, 
and was kept in place by a ribbon of some gay color 
all round the crown. The light muslin, often bor- 
dered with lace, descended in graceful folds on either 
side of the face and on the back, protecting the neck 
from exposure to the sun. It was a becoming coiffure, 
and was further improved, after a short time, by being 
divided in the back, and made to hang down both 
shoulders to the waist, the ends being finished off with 
a knot or tassel. 

The sleeves kept getting shorter, and the exposure 
of bare arms in the streets were disapproved by staid 
people and ridiculed by the wits. The Portfolio in 
1803 got off the following cruel hit : 

" The display of a beautiful elbow is now becoming an old fashion, 
and some dashing belles intend to introduce the display of a finely- 
shaped knee. This will be no difficulty, considering that petticoats are 
laid uside." 

It was during this period of bare arms that Moses 
Guest wrote the following piece, which appeared in 
the volume entitled '' Poems on Several Occasions,'' 
published in Cincinnati some years later: 

'■Their heads and heelB are often changing, 
And still for novelty they're ranging, 
Sometimes a hoop must swell their size, 
And sometimes they a cushion prize; 
Sometimes we find their waists are small, 
But now we see they have none at all. 
A princess fair first found this out — 
Designed to hide her shape, no doubt. 
Her light, loose dress, 'twas said, looked neat; 
'Twas elegant, 'twas thought complete. 
Then soon from Charlotte, England's queen, 
Down to the lowest maid 'twas seen. 
With something new they're always arming, 
And say variety is charming! 
Their elbows naked now we view — 
I'd almost said their bodies too — 
For many, filled, 'tis said, with pride, 
Have laid their underclothes aside; 
Such antique dress they do despise, 
And nought but gauze and muslin prize." 

The author adds, in a note, " When this piece was 
written it was the fashion for young ladies to dress as 
thinly as possible, with gauze and muslin ; to have 
their arms bare nearly up to the shoulders, and also 
to have the upper part of their breasts bare, — which 
fashion they adhered to even in the most severe winter 

A novelty introduced in 1803, was a basque of dif- 

ferent material and color from that of the dress. It 
was received with much favor and retained for several 
years with such improvements from time to time aa 
lengthening the basque, edging it with embroidery, 
and adding variety by the use of a scarf fastened at 
the right shoulder and on the opposite side below the 
middle of the dress with a flower. 

The French fashions were not the only ones con- 
sulted, however; many, and of the less frivolous, 
clung to the old England styles. 

The Philadelphia Repository, in 1802, reported the 
London fashions in this manner : 

" The Bonapartian hat is coming into vogue. It consists of white or 
salmon-colored satin, in the form of a helmet, surrounded with a wreath 
of laurel, and worn much on oue side. 

"Plain white chip hats, in the gipsy style, without any ornament 
whatever, tied carelessly under the chin with pea-green or pink ribbon. 

"The archer-dress, a petticoat without any train, with a border of 
green or blue; a blue or green sarcenet bodflice, vandyked at bottom; 
loose chemise sleeves, and no handkerchief. The head-dress, a small 
white or blue satin hat, turned up in front. Brown, gray, or olive silk 
stockings with yellow or orange cloaks, are worn by the ladies to walk in. 

" Feathers and flowers continue to be much worn, and wreaths of roses 
on the hair for full-dress, in preference to more cumbrous ornaments. 

"Smalt watches are worn by a few dashing belles, on their bosoms, 
not bigger than the round of a half-guinea." 

The pelisse, of different color from the underdress, 
came into fashion in 1805. The muffs used in winter, 
which had been hitherto quite small, attained a large 
size ; boas of white or colored fur became also very 
popular. The shape of the bonnet underwent a con- 
siderable change about that time ; the front was turned 
up high above the forehead, and a large ostrich feather 
rose conspicuously over the crown. The style of the 
dress remained pretty much the same. 

A writer in the Portfolio, in 1804, attacked a new 
style of bonnets in this wise : " The ladies have just 
now adopted a repulsive kind of hat, which may be 
called the ' poking hat.' It has a long projection, like 
the beak of a snipe, and is a good guard against all 
familiar approach of those who have any regard for 
their eyes. It is an invention inspired by the Goddess 
of Ugliness, and is quite worthy of its origin." This 
head-gear, called the " poke bonnet" and in later years 
the " coal-scuttle bonnet," could not withstand the 
ridicule constantly " poked" at it by the wits ; besides, 
the ladies became convinced that it spoiled their good 
looks ; it was given up. But, by a strange contradic- 
tion, the very homeliness which caused it to be dis- 
carded by the worldly, gave it favor in the eyes of the 
Quakers. This was the very thing to keep variety 
out of the heads of the young Quakeresses. Some 
slight alterations were made to it, and it was pre- 
scribed as the proper and permanent head-dress for 
the female members of the sect. Many a pretty face 
beams now from under the modest " scoop bonnet," 
the gentle possessor of which has never heard of its 
original model, the " poke bonnet," once worn by the 
worldly belles of 1804. 

In 1806 the skirts of the dress were made longer, 
and a very decided tendency toward a train was per- 
ceptible. But, alas ! as the skirt lengthened the waist 

miLkmwm& osmiums.® am kiis.a®» muses. 

[h'rum prlutaiu I'euiisjlvalihi Biatoik-ul SucU-tj-J 



shortened, and a writer in that year expressed his 
dissatisfaction by the remark, " The part called the 
waist, which used to be admired, has disappeared, and 
we are left to conjecture where it may be found." 

A fur hat, with rim and bell-crown, similar to the 
men's pattern of round hats, was worn that year by 
many ladies as a comfortable, if not pretty, head- 
dress for walking out in winter. The straw bonnets 
for summer wear were tastefully decorated with rib- 
bons and flowers. A pretty fashion, introduced from 
France about this time, was that of carrying a rich 
lace handkerchief in the hand. It came from the 
Empress Josephine; that amiable woman had very 
bad front teeth, and, as she was very gay and easily 
provoked to laughter, when she laughed she raised 
her handkerchief to her mouth to conceal this defect. 
Josephine was passionately fond of fine laces, and 
her handkerchiefs were made of this costly fabric. 
The ladies of the court took to flourishing lace hand- 
kerchiefs, and they became an indispensable part of 
a fashionable costume. Thus it came to pass that the 
elegant daughters of the Philadelphia merchants in- 
vested large sums in lace handkerchiefs, because an em- 
press of the French happened to have defective teeth. 

Very little has been said of the costumes of chil- 
dren. During a former period, as we have seen, they 
wore wigs, and, from all accounts, thek costume made 
them the miniature "counterfeit presentments" of 
their papas and mammas ; but the ideas of Jean Jac- 
ques Rousseau about childhood having created quite 
a furor just before the French revolution, more free- 
dom was given to the youthful limbs. Then Dame 
Fashion claimed this a new conquest, and pretty soon 
there were special styles for children's dresses ; these 
were imported in Philadelphia, as well as the styleB 
for the grown folks. They were not always comfort- 
able nor becoming to childhood. 

About 1806 an entire metamorphosis took place in 
the dress of young gentlemen, owing to the make and 
wear of their small-clothes and the shape of the trow- 
sers. A writer of the period said, — 

" The prominence that was formerly continued in the vest or jacket 
has found its way into a pair of wide pantaloons, making a correspond- 
ing swell or protuberance in front and rear; and these are made more 
conspicuous by the short jacket that merely covers breast and shoul- 
ders. In fact, the appearance of some is so remarkable that, if one of 
their grandmothers conld now see them, she would conclude that they 
were ready to tumble to pieces 1" 

Witty ladies sometimes amused themselves at the 
expense of the beaux. The following song appeared 
in the Portfolio Aug. 9, 1806 : 

" A New Song by Mirn Kitty Orotchet. 
[" To be taid or sung to the time of ' Dorothy Dumps,' or any other tune the 
reader pleases.] 
" Of all the gay beaux 
That sport their smart clothes, 
There's none that my fancy can pleaBe, 
With their spencers of crops, 
Or woolly foretops, 
Like Bob with his tippy bootees. 

" Inexpressibles tight 

Some fancies delight, 
With bunches of tapes at their knees; 

Yet all must confess, 

Though snug in the dress, 
They yield to Bob's tippy bootees. 

" The blue pantaloons, 

As they march in platoons, 
Each lady's attention quick seize ; 

But I let them pass by, 

And turn round my eye, 
Then look at Bob's tippy bootees ! 

" View little Jack Spratt, 

With his head from cravat 
Peeping out like a mouse from a cheese, 

With shoeB on his toes, 

And a handful of hows, 
Then look at Bob's tippy bootees I 

" Then there's Sir Thomas Tape, 

With a coat and a cape 
Like blankets of wild Cherokees ; 

Whether quiet or moving, 

He looks like a sloven, 
Near Bob with his tippy bootees. 

" With such a dear lad 

I ne'er could be sad, 
Should we wander o'er mountains or seas ; 

And happen what might, 

I'd still find delight 
In my Bob with his tippy bootees I" 

The Philadelphians, in all times, seem to have been 
fond of badinage. We have given in this chapter 
many squibs and witty criticisms published in the 
newspapers at different times during the period of 
which we treat. We will close these quotations with 
some amusing extracts from Washington Irving's 
" Stranger in Philadelphia," published in Salmagundi, 
in 1807. Under the guise of pleasant banter, they 
express a very flattering opinion of Philadelphia so- 
ciety. The interest to be found in the perusal of these 
extracts will be our excuse for their length. At the 
time of his visit Irving was a young man, fond of 
society, and who saw the best there was in Phila- 

He pays his compliments to the ladies in this 
fashion, — 

" The Philadelphia ladies are, some of them, beautiful ; some of them 
tolerably good-looking ; and some of them, to say the truth, are not at 
all handsome. They are, however, very agreeable in general, except 
those who are reckoned witty, who, if I might be allowed to speak my 
mind, are very disagreeable, particularly to young gentlemen who are 
traveling for information. Being fond of tea-parties, they are a little 
given to criticism, but are in general remarkably discreet and very in- 
dustrious, as I have been assured by some of my friends." 

In another place he compares their ways to those 
of the New York ladies, and the comparison is not to 
the advantage of the latter. He says, — 

" The amusements of the Philadelphians are dancing, punning, tea- 
parties, and theatrical exhibitions. Iu the first they are far inferior to 
the young people of New York, owing to the misfortune of their mostly 
preferring to idle away the time in the cultivation of the head instead 
of the heels. It is a melancholy fact that an infinite number of young 
ladiesin Philadelphia, whose minds are elegantly accomplished in liter- 
ature, have sacrificed to the attainment of such trifling acquisitions the 
pigeon-wing, the waltz, the Cossack dance, and other matters of equal 
importance. On the other hand, they excel the New Yorkers in pun- 
ning, and iu the management of tea-parties. In New York you never 



hear, except from some, young gentleman just returned from a visit to 
Philadelphia, a single attempt at panning. And at a tea-party the ladies 
in general are disposed close together, like a setting of jewels or pearls 
round a locket, in all the majesty of good behavior ; and if a gentleman 
wishes to have a conversation with one of them aboutthe backwardness 
of the spring, the improvements in the theatre, or the merits of his horse, 
he is obliged to march up in the face of such volleys of eye-shots, such 
a formidable artillery of glances, that if he escapes annihilation he 
should cry out ' A miracle 1' and never encounter such dangers again. 
£ remember to have once heard a very valiant British officer, who had 
served with credit for some years in the train-bands, declare, with a vet- 
eran oath, that Booner than encounter such a deadly peril he would fight 
his way clear through a London mob, though he were pelted with brick- 
bats all the time 1 Some ladies who were present at this declaration of 
the gallant officer were inclined to consider it a great compliment, until 
one more knowing than the rest declared, with a little piece of a sneer, 
that they were very much obliged to him for likening the company to a 
London mob, and their glances to brickbats 1 The officer looked blue, 
turned on his heel, made a fine retreat, and went home, with a determi- 
nation to quiz the American ladies as soon as he got to London." 

He falls in with the wags, and being '[doubtless 
recognized as one of the brotherhood, is greeted with 
broadsides of wit, which inspires the following 
lament : 

"Oil, my friend, how dreadfully I have been maltreated in this most 
facetious city I The good folk of this place have a most wicked deter- 
mination of being all thought wits and beaux esprite; and they are not 
content with being thought so by themselves, but they insist that 
everybody else should be of the same opinion, and it has produced the 
most violent attack of puns upon my nervous system. The Philadel- 
phians do absolutely ' live, move, and have a being' entirely upon puns, 
and their wits are absolutely cut up into sixpenny-bits, and dealt out in 
small change. I cannot speak two sentences bat that I see a pan gath- 
ering in the faces of my hearers. I absolutely shudder with horror. 
Think what miseries I suffer, me to whom a pun is abomination I Is 
there anything in the whole volume of the ' miseries of human life* to 
equal it? I experienced the first attack of forlorn wit on entering 
Philadelphia. It was equal to a twinge of the gout or a stitch in the 
side. I found it was repeated at every step. I could not turn a corner 
but that a pun was hurled at my head ; till, to complete my annoyance, 
two young devils of punsters, who began just to crow in the art like young 
bantams, penned me up in a corner at a tea-party, and did so he-pun 
me that I was reduced to absolute stupidity. I hastened home pro- 
digiously indisposed, took to my bed, and was only roused therefrom by 
the sound of the breakfast-bell." 

One more extract, too good to be lost. Poor 
Irving is button-held by a mad punster, and com- 
pelled to listen to a series of msaxisjeux d' esprit. He 
tells the story in such a way as to make the reader 
share his agony. Here it is : 

" On my way from the stage-office to Renshaw's I waB accosted by 
a good-looking young gentleman from New Jersey who had caught the 
infection. He took me by the button, and informed me of a contest that 
had lately taken place between a tailor and a shoemaker about, — I forget 
what. Snip was pronounced a great fellow of capability, — a man of gen- 
tlemanly habits, who would doubtless suit everybody. The shoemaker 
bristled up at this, and waxed exceeding wroth, — swore the tailor was but 
a half'souhd fellow, and that it was easy to shew he was never cut out for 
a gentleman. The choler of the tailor was up in an instant. He swore by 
his thimble that he would never pocket such an insult, butwould baatetiny 
man who dared to repeat it. Honest Crispin waB now worked up to his 
proper pitch, and was determined to yield the tailor no quarters ; he vowed 
he would lose his all hut what be would gain his ends. He resolutely 
held out to the last ; and, on his threatening to back-strap his adversary, 
the tailor was obliged to sheer off, — declaring, at the same time, that he 
would have him bound over. The young gentleman, having finished his 
detail, gave a most obstreperous laugh, and hurried on" to tell his story 
to somebody else. ' Licentia punica? as Horace observes. It did my busi- 
ness. I went home, took to my bed, and was two days confined with this 
singular complaint." 

The contest between the colonies and the mother- 
country had attracted the attention of the world, and 

many distinguished travelers visited the United States 
when peace was restored. We have quoted exten- 
sively from the impressions of travel published by 
most of them. The greater number of these travelers, 
especially in the early period, were Frenchmen, — a 
fact easily accounted for by the friendly relations 
which existed between the people of the two coun- 
tries since the time when the allied forces of France 
and the United States had fought the battles of the 

Francois Jean, Marquis de Chastellux, member of 
the French Academy and " marechal des camps" in 
the armies of the king of France, came to this coun- 
try in 1780, with the rank of major-general, under 
Count de Rochambeau. He remained in this country 
about three years, and won the good opinion of the 
Philadelphians during his sojourn in Philadelphia in 
1782. Of the estimation in which he was held by 
Washington, one may judge from the latter's playful 
letter congratulating the marquis on his marriage, 
which had taken place in Paris, in 1787, but a short 
time before his death. " I was," wrote Washington, 
" not less delighted than surprised to meet the plain 
American words, ' my wife.' A wife! well, my dear 
Marquis, I can scarcely refrain from smiling to find 
you caught at last. I saw by the eulogium you often 
made on the happiness of domestic life in America, 
that you had swallowed the bait, and that you would 
as surely be taken, one day or another, as that you were 
a philosopher and a soldier. So your day has at length 
come. I am glad of it, with all my heart. It is quite 
good enough for you. Now you are well served for 
coming to fight in favor of the American rebels, all 
the way across the Atlantic Ocean, by catching that 
terrible contagion, domestic felicity, which, like the 
smallpox or the plague, a man can only have once 
in his life, because it commonly lasts him (at least 
with us in America, — I know not how you manage 
these matters in France) for his whole lifetime. And 
yet, after all, the worst wish which I can find it in my 
heart to make against Madame de Chastellux and 
yourself is, that you may neither of you ever get the 
better of this same domestic felicity during the entire 
course of your mortal existence. If so wonderful an 
event should have occasioned me, my dear Marquis, 
to write in a strange style, you will understand me as 
clearly as if I had said, what, in plain English, is the 
simple truth, ' Do me the justice to believe that I take 
a heartfelt interest in whatever concerns your happi- 
ness.' And, in this view, I sincerely congratulate you 
on your auspicious matrimonial connection." Chas- 
tellux, on his return to France, published the follow- 
ing works : " Voyage dans PAmerique septentrionale 
dans les Annees 1780, '81, '82," " Discours sur les 
Avantages et Desavantages qui resultent pour l'Eu- 
rope de la Decouverte de l'Amerique," "Discours en 
Vers adresses aux Officiers et Soldats des differentes 
Armees americaines, traduit de l'Anglais de David 
Humphreys," "De la F61icite publique." 



The young, handsome, and intelligent Brissot de 
Warville 1 came to Philadelphia in 1788-89. He was 
a quick observer, and Washington said of him that 
" he was intelligent, discreet, and disposed, to receive 
favorable impressions of America." Brissot pub- 
lished his impressions in " Nouveau Voyage dans les 
Etats-Unis de l'Amerique septentrionale." He also 
published at Philadelphia and Geneva "Examen du 
Voyage du Marquis de Chastellux dans l'Amerique 
septentrionale," "Memoire sur les Noirs de l'Ame- 
rique septentrionale lu a 1' Assembled de la Soci6t6 des 
Amis des Noirs," and " De la France et des Etats- 
TJnis, ou de l'Importance de la Revolution de l'Ame- 
rique pour le Bonheur de la France." Brissot was 
more critical than Chastellux, and censured some of 
the statements of the latter very severely. 

The visit of Francois Auguste de Chateaubriand 

1 The life and sad ending of this gifted and well-meaning man de- 
serve more than a passing notice. Jean Pierre Brissot was what would 
be styled to-day " a self-made man." The son of a tavern-keeper of 
Chartres, he had received a good education. He left college full of ad- 
miration for theancient Romans of the republic, and thirsting for fame. 
Bnt his obscure plebeian name was an obstacle to success. Hie father 
had purchased a small estate called Ooarville ; he assumed this name, 
changing the " Ou" into the W, so little used in France then, and came 
to Paris as Brissot de Warville. His undoubted talent and genial man- 
ner, his liberal views fearlessly expressed, soon made him friends among 
the philosophers of the school of Voltaire and Rousseau, who were un- 
consciously preparing the French Revolution. He published several 
pamphlets on the state of the kingdom, which led to his being impris- 
oned in the Bastille. He was released after a few months' confinement, 
through the influence of the Duke d'Orleans, and soon thereafter went 
to England, it is said, on a secret mission. It was after tbis he came to 
America. The political agitation which preceded the Revolution of 
1789 hastened his return to France. He appeared in Paris in the garb 
of a Quaker, and, no sooner arrived, took an active part in public affairs. 
He published several pamphlets, and started the journal " Le Patriote 
Francais," which soon commanded great influence. He was elected a 
deputy to tbe Legislative Assembly, and appointed member of the com- 
mittee on foreign relations. It was owing to Brissot's report, as presi- 
dent of this committee, that Louis XVI. was obliged to declare war 
against tbo Emperor of Germany, April 20, 1792. On the 1st of Febru- 
ary, 1793, he urged and obtained a declaration of war against England 
and Holland. One of the leaders of the Girondins, he had bis own fol- 
lowers, known by tbe name of Brusotins. His influence excited the 
jealousy of Robespierre, who denounced him as a traitor for having 
drawn the country into war, the costs and sufferings of which would be 
borne by the people. The defeat of the Girondins' party, on the 31st 
of May, ruined Brissot's prospects, and put his life in danger. Orders 
for his arrest, and that of several influential "Brissotins," had already 
been Issued by the terrible Comitt, the passive instrument of Robes- 
pierre's vengeance. Brissot attempted to seek an asylum of safety in 
Switzerland, and left Paris in disguise, with the passport of a Swiss 
merchant. On the way he was recognized, and arrested, and brought 
back to Paris, where the guillotine ended his checkered life, Oct. 31, 
1793. Brissot was an honest man, and a sincere republican, with no 
mean abilities. In addition to the books already quotod, which all re- 
late to America, he published the following important works : " Biblio- 
theque pbilosophique sur les Lois criminelles," 1782-86, 10 vols. 8vo ; 
" De la Verite, ou Meditations sur les MoyenB de parvenir a la Verite de 
toutes les Connaissances bumaines," 1782, 8vo ; " Tableau de la Situation 
des Anglais dans les Indes orientates, " 1784, 8vo; "Lettres politiques 
eur l'Histoire d'Angleterre," 1786, 2 voIb. 8vo; and many political 
pamphlets on French affairs. Such is the work of the man in whom 
Sullivan Baw only "a brisk little Frenchman." Returning to France 
with his republican theories considerably modified by what he had seen 
and observed in the United States, Brissot wished Frauce to have a re- 
public modeled upon the one he hod just left, and which he admired 
Bincerely. The Reign of Terror ended his dream, as it has that of many 
sincere republicans. 

has already been mentioned in these pages. He gave 
up his contemplated expedition to the North Pole, 
but he traveled extensively through this country, 
visited the West and Northwest, and the South as far 
as Florida, and lived some time among the Indiana 
on the borders of the great lakes. He returned to 
France at the end of 1792, ignorant of the great events 
that had taken place during his long absence in the 
wilds of America. He saw his nearest relatives perish 
by the guillotine, and he remained alone the last of a 
noble race. These horrors cast a shadow over his 
whole life. He never was a happy man, though he 
acquired undying fame as a poet, author, and states- 
man. His visit to America inspired him to write 
"The Natchez," "Atala," "RenS," and the" Voyage 
en Am6rique," already quoted. It was also in the 
forests of the New World that he conceived his great 
work, " The Genius of Christianity," a book which 
did more to save France from the gross materialism 
of the revolutionists than anything that has been 
written on the subject. Chateaubriand had hoped to 
find a second Washington in Bonaparte. Disap- 
pointed in this hope, he renounced the liberal doc- 
trines of his youth. 

Count Adriani, of Milan, visited the United States 
in 1790, being the bearer of an ode addressed to 
Washington by Alfieri. He published some account 
of his travels, which was considered abusive. 

Several exiles came from France during the reign 
of the "terrorists.'' The Viscount de Noailles, a 
brother-in-law of Lafayette and a soldier of the Revo- 
lutionary war, where he had held ah officer's commis- 
sion under Count de Rochambeau, came back, a fugi- 
tive, in 1793. Like many other noblemen of the time, 
prompted by the liberal principles which had led him 
to offer his sword to the cause of freedom in America, 
he had sided with the people in 1789, but when he 
saw Louis XVI. a prisoner and doomed to the guillo- 
tine, he went to England and thence came to Philadel- 
phia, where he remained until better times permitted 
him to return to his native land. He at one time 
projected a settlement of the Susquehanna, but aban- 
doned it for want of funds. He was very poor while 
in America, and during the latter portion of his stay 
in the city he occupied, gratuitously, the third story 
of a house upon the grounds of William Bingham, 
situate on Fourth Street, near Spruce, with an en- 
trance from the street. 

William Cobbett, the politician, Dr. Joseph Priest- 
ley, a man of science and a rationalistic philosopher 
together with Dr. Thomas Cooper, a natural philoso- 
pher and chemist, came to the United States in 1794. 
Cobbett settled in Philadelphia, where he pitched 
into politics with such freedom that six or seven years' 
experience of America terminated his career. Priest- 
ley lectured and wrote, but finally settled at North- 
umberland, on the Susquehanna, together with his son 
Dr. Cooper being a neighbor. 
The celebrated diplomatist Charles Maurice, Prince 



de Talleyrand P6rigord, Bishop of Autun, came to 
Philadelphia. A nobleman and a priest, he had 
been one of the most active supporters of the French 
Revolution. Still, he was not of that advanced class 
of republicans who advocated the guillotine as the 
mainstay of liberty, and, after the fall of Louis XVI., 
he fell into discredit and thought it safe to leave 
France. He sought a refuge in England, but the 
government of that country was in little sympathy 
with renegades and revolutionists, and Talleyrand 
was given twenty-four hours' notice to leave Brit- 
ish soil. It was then he came to America. Here 
he entered into important mercantile speculations, 
made money, and took out papers of naturalization. 
He returned to France, however, after the end of 
the Reign of Terror, and acquired the unenviable 
name of the most cunning and unscrupulous diplo- 
matist in Europe. The celebrated axiom attributed 
to him, " Speech was given to man to enable him to 
disguise his thoughts," gives the key to his character. 
He served alternately Napoleon and the Bourbons, 
and betrayed them in turn. Despised, yet feared, 
employed for his undoubted talent at a time when 
his craftiness made him the head of European diplo- 
macy, he lived until 1838. He was a great wit, and 
his bon mots are often quoted. Talleyrand, although 
he had once enjoyed the title and privileges of an 
American citizen, was not friendly to the United 
States, and often made American society the subject 
of his mockery. 1 

1 After his return to Paris Talleyrand lived with a heautiful widow 
named Mrs. Grandt, who was the most ignorant and stupid creature to 
be found. To please the first consul, who frowned down scandalous im- 
morality among the officers of the government, he married this woman 
as soon as he was relieved of his priestly vows by a brief of the Pope, 
in 1801-2. Talleyrand liked to give dinners, and madame's naiveUs 
usually kept him iu hot water on such occasions. The celebrated 
traveler, Denon, having returned from his voyages, was lionized by 
Parisian society, and Talleyrand, as a matter of course, wished to en- 
tertain him. Full of misgivings, the prince had a little precautionary 
talk at breakfast with his beautiful companion. " My dear," said he, 
"Mr. Denon, the famous voyager, will dine with us to-day. He will sit 
on your right; try to say something agreeable to him. His book of 
travels had just been published ; send for it and read it to-day. You 
will find it very entertaining, for Mr. Denon has visited many strange 
countries and met with thrilling adventures : he has been shipwrecked, 
has lived among the savages. You can lead him to talk of these ad- 
ventures ; nothing pleases a traveler more than to speak of his travels." 
And Talleyrand went away rejoicing in his happy forethought. Poor 
madanie was anxious to please her lord; she was aware that he had 
more than once blushed at her blunders. Wasn't it kind of him to 
suggest a way out of her embarrassment? She went immediately to 
the bookseller's; she would get the book herself. Alasl on entering 
the store she had entirely forgotten the traveler's name. " It is a book 
full of adventures," she explained to the shopman ; " there is something 
in it about shipwrecks and savages and strange things seen in wild 
countries. I can't recollect the man's name, hut I know it ends in on. 
Why, you must know what I mean ; everybody reads this book P " Ah 1 
exclaimed the bookseller, after thinking a moment, "I know what 
madame wants. Here is the book; I have sold ever so many copies of 
it. Madame will find itvery interesting." The gratified lady seized 
her prize, drove home, and shut herself up with the precious volume. 
When she came down to meet her guests she was radiant with smiles, 
and she gave her husband a reassuring look of intelligence. During 
the early part of a dinner-party there is generally little conversation, 
the guests are too much absorbed by the process of mastication. But 

The Duke de la Rochefoucauld-Liancourt came to 
Philadelphia about the close of the year 1794, and 
remained there about five months. He also was an 
exile, and had lived fifteen months in England before 
coming to the United States. A nobleman of ancient 
lineage and liberal views, he brought with him many 
letters of introduction, and was at once received in 
the best society in Philadelphia. He was particu- 
larly intimate with the families of Gen. Henry Knox 
and Judge Chew. On his return to France he pub- 
lished a work on " The Prisons of Philadelphia," and 
his " Voyage dans les Etats-Unis," in eight volumes. 
He was a close observer, and his study of American 
society and institutions is remarkable for the impar- 
tiality of the writer. 

Alexander Baring, son of Sir Francis Baring, baro- 
net and merchant, afterward banker, was sent to the 
United States, when he attained the age of manhood, 
to acquire a knowledge of the commercial relations 
between Great Britain and America. While here he 
moved in the best society, and he became acquainted 
with Anne Louisa, daughter of William Bingham, 
and married her. While residing in Philadelphia, 
his son, William Bingham Baring, was born. The 
father afterward became, in England, banker for the 
United States. During the war of 1812 this firm, 
without instructions from the United States, paid 
regularly the interest on the American debt owing in 
Great Britain, although without remittances. Mr. 
Baring afterward became Lord Ashburton, and in 
1842 came to the United States once more as special 
ambassador from Great Britain, during which time 
was negotiated the great Ashburton-Webster treaty 
in relation to the northeastern boundary. Lord Ash- 
burton died in 1848. 

George Washington Lafayette, son of the Marquis, 

madame could not wait; she was brimming over with recently acquired 
information ; she had prepared her phrase of attack, and was afraid she 
might forget it. Amid the general silence her clear, silvery voice was 
heard addressing the following sympathetic remark to her right-hand 
neighbor: "Ah! monsieur, what must have been your grief when 
you saw your faithful Friday die, leaving you alone once more on your 
island?" Denon looked aghast at her; every head was turned toward 
that end of the table, while at the other end the prince, his usually sallow 
face red with mortification, looked at his wife with an expression which 
would have terrified the poor lady had Bhe Been it; but she was looking 
at Denon. and repeating her pathetic ejaculations about " that poor man 
Friday." Alight dawned on the mind of the great traveler ; he had 
read De Foe's charming book, which had recently been translated in 
French. Madame had mistaken him for " Robinson," — the French sel- 
dom use the suruame " Crusoe," but designate the lonely inhabitant 
of the deserted iBle by the simple cognomen " Robinson. " Such was, 
indeed, the fact ; madame had devoured tbe book as the narrative of real 
adventures, of which she was to meet the interesting hero. Denon was 
a kind man. He readily understood the simple creature at his Bide, 
and Instead of chaffing her he told her many pleaBant little stories of his 
own experience, not so thrilling, he said, as the adventures of that much 
more celebrated traveler for whom she had done him the honor to mis- 
take him. These two chatted away like a pair of friends the whole 
evening. Madame thought Robinson-Denon the most pleasant man 
she had ever met. But Talleyrand vowed inpelto that he would never 
again presume to suggest beforehand a subject of conversation for 
madame. The story was too good to be lost; it soon went the rounds of 
the Parisian salons, and was declared to be the best of Madame Grandt's 
many blunders. 



when the latter was taken prisoner by the Austrians, 
came to Philadelphia with his tutor, M. Frestell.. 
Washington was deeply moved by the misfortunes of 
his friend and companion in arms, but he would not, 
in the then condition of political affairs, allow the 
son to be brought too prominently before the public. 
The youth continued quietly his studies, the Presi- 
dent seeing that he lacked nothing. But when Wash- 
ington ceased to be the President of the United States, 
he was no longer hindered by reasons of state from 
showing his affection for the son of Lafayette. He 
took the young man with him to Mount Vernon, and 
lavished upon him, until his departure for France, 
all the attentions and care of a loving father. 

" Misfortune makes strange bed-fellows," says the 
proverb. Philadelphia, in those days, gave shelter to 
Frenchmen of various conditions of life, and whose 
future was to show still greater disparity. In the 
same year, 1796, there arrived a scion of royal blood, 
the young Duke of Orleans, who, thirty-four years 
later, was to be known as " Louis Philippe ler Roi 
des Francais." His father, " Philippe Egalite," had 
dishonored himself, adopting the part of a fierce Ja- 
cobin, and casting the vilest insinuations on the fair 
name of his own mother. Then destroyed by the 
very wretches whose favor he had courted, he had 
perished by the guillotine. The eldest of three sons, 
young Louis Philippe, had joined the French army, 
and sought to retrieve the paternal disgrace by deeds 
of valor ; but his services did not shield him from 
persecution. Exile was his reward. He went to 
Switzerland, where he taught school. Gouverneur 
Morris induced him to go to the United States, and 
even gave him letters of credit on New York bankers ; 
but the young prince possessed the true dignity of 
misfortune, and would not avail himself of Mr. Mor- 
ris' generosity. In Philadelphia he was known to be 
in very straitened circumstances, but he moved in 
the best society and was universally respected. He 
became intimate with Mr. William Bingham's family, 
and, smitten with the charms of one of the daughters, 
made her an offer of marriage. The prudent father 
declined the royal alliance : " Should you ever be re- 
stored to your hereditary position," he said, " you 
will be too great a match for her ; if not, she is too 
great a match for you." Thus, a Philadelphia belle 
narrowly escaped ascending the throne of France, or, 
perhaps, giving the world another edition of the Pat- 
terson-Bonaparte case. 

In 1797 the duke's brothers, Duke de Montpensier 
and Count de Beaujolais, joined him in Philadelphia. 
It seems that they engaged in business, for the City 
Directory for 1798 has on its register, " D'Orleans, 
Messrs., merchants, near No. 100 South Front." A 
short time after this they left Philadelphia. The 
year before they had done what was considered a 
hazardous undertaking, viz., making a tour through 
the West and South on horseback, and attended by a 
single servant. Louis Philippe, after he became king, 

adverted freely to his days of exile. He startled a 
foreign ambassador very much one day by beginning 
a remark with the words, " When I was a school- 
master." He used to say that he was the first king 
who had " cleaned his own shoes." 

Constantin Francois Chasseboeuf, Count De Vol- 
ney, French author and free-thinker, exiled from 
France after confinement by Robespierre, came to 
the United States in 1795, and remained in the 
country three years. Before his arrival he had pub- 
lished at Geneva his celebrated work, "Les Ruines, 
ou Medidations sur les Revolutions des Empires." 
Stuart painted his portrait while he was in Philadel- 
phia. Samuel Breck said, — 

" Volney I knew well. (Note that I was upward of twenty-five yeans 
old in those days.) He was a man, as I have said elsewhere, of proud 
spirit and sour temper, jeolouB of the least appearance of slight, pre- 
suming much on his celebrity as a writer, and who judged us in terms 
of bitterness and folly. He had the arrogance to assert that the talents 
of Washington would not have, raised him above the rank of a colonel 
in the French service. He pronounced as flippantly upon the spirit of 
our people, which he did not at all understand, as be did upon the qual- 
ifications of Washington. Happening to be in conversation one ovening 
with him, in a richly-furnished room, when the news arrived of the 
Algerines having declared war, he pointed to the Bilk curtains, and 
remarked to me that since we had taken to decorate our houses with 
the rich trappings of European luxury, we must submit to any foe who 
chose to attack us, and that the Moors had nothing to do but to sail 
into our harborB and put us under contribution, adding that the revolu- 
tionary courage of the people had become enervated by fine-papered 
parlors and satin chairs. This is the way we were judged by nearly 
every superficial, prejudiced foreigner." 

In the year 1796 there came to Philadelphia Dr. 
Eric Bollman, who had acquired some celebrity by his 
bold but unsuccessful attempt to -liberate Gen. La- 
fayette from an Austrian prison in 1795. The name 
of Lafayette, ever dear to the Americans, insured 
the doctor a hearty welcome, but he does not seem to 
have created a very favorable impression here. John 
Adams, in a letter to his daughter, expressed the fol- 
lowing severe opinion of the stranger : " With an ex- 
travagant character for knowledge and capacity, he 
appears to be an adventurer with little judgment or 

Hamilton thought more favorably of Dr. Bollman. 
He wrote of him to Washington, " He appears to 
have been induced to think that he attempted a 
service which would strongly recommend him to the 
favor of the people of this country ; and, as a con- 
sequence, he hopes for some civil employment under 
our government. He seems to be a man of educa- 
tion, speaks several languages, converses sensibly, is 
of polite manners, and, I dare say, has the material of 
future advancement." 

Bollman remained in the United States for many 

Thaddeus Kosciusko, another of those gallant for- 
eigners who had fought for American independence, 
returned to this country in 1797. The life of this 
celebrated Polish patriot since the Revolutionary 
war had been most eventful. Taking an active part 
in the last struggle of Poland for liberty, between 



1789 and 1794, he was Dictator of that unfortunate 
country when he fell, covered with wounds, at the 
battle of Maciejowice. He was taken prisoner, and 
remained two years a captive. Congress had given 
him a pension and added a grant of land. Kosci- 
usko's character was without blemish ; his bravery in 
the field and skill as an engineer had won him dis- 
tinction in the American army. De Liancourt speaks 
highly of him in his book on the United States. 

With Kosciusko came another Polish patriot, who 
had been his companion in arms and in captivity, the 
poet Julian Drsin Niemciewicz. He had been a 
deputy of the Diet of Lithuania, where the fervor of 
his eloquence fired all hearts. Niemciewicz was a 
very amiable man as well as a gifted poet. He won 
the heart of an American lady, married her, and 
lived several years in the United States. 

Andr<3 Michaux and his son, Francois Andr6, both 
eminent French botanists, visited Philadelphia in 
1796. Francois Andre 1 Michaux came again, alone, 
in 1802, commissioned by the French government to 
examine the natural productions of the Western 
States. He made a third visit in 1806. Michaux, 
the younger, acquired great fame as a botanist. Be- 
sides his works upon forest trees, in which he speaks 
of America, he published " A Journey to the West of 
the Allegheny Mountains," in which appear several 
notices of Philadelphia. The book was originally 
published at London, in 1805. 

France, naturally, since she was the ally of the re- 
volted colonies, was the first power which sent a rep- 
resentative to the United States. Her first ambassador, 
Monsieur Gerard, was a polished gentleman, of excel- 
lent manners and much ability. He made many 
friends in Philadelphia, although he did not remain 
very long here. Washington held him in great 
esteem. Watson relates, upon the authority of Col. 
McLane, who was among the guests, that Monsieur 
Gerard gave once an elegant dinner to about one 
hundred French and American officers, and while 
they were dining there arose a violent thunder-storm. 
The lightning struck the house and melted all the 
silver spoons and other plate upon the table. One of 
the French officers was killed and all the company 
stunned by the fearful shock. 

The Chevalier de la Luzerne succeeded Monsieur 
Gerard. He occupied Carpenter's mansion, and it 
was there he gave the entertainment in honor of the 
birth of the Dauphin of France, already mentioned. 
It was for the time a scene of magnificence unprece- 
dented. " The whole gardens were gorgeously illu- 
minated, and the guests were seen by the crowd from 
the street under an illuminated arcade of fanciful 
construction and scenery." The fite ended with a 
splendid display of fire-works. De la Luzerne had 
the honor of presenting to Congress the pictures of 
Louis XVI. and his unfortunate consort, Marie An- 
toinette, sent by the king in testimonial of friendship. 
These portraits were placed in the large committee- 

room of the Senate. They were subsequently taken 
-to Washington City when the seat of government was 
removed there, and were burned by the English in 
the war of 1812. 

When France ceased to support a full minister to 
the United States, M. Barb6 de Marbois, who had 
come with De la Luzerne as his secretary of legation, 
took charge of the office. When Congress removed 
to New York M. de Marbois went to that city, and 
a short time after married a daughter of William 
Moore, at one time president of Pennsylvania. She 
was a sister of Col. Thomas Lloyd Moore. Appointed 
intendant of Hispaniola in 1785, M. de Marbois left 
New York and was succeeded as charg'e d'affaires by 
Louis William Otto. The latter was superseded by 
the Marquis de Moustier in 1787, but resumed the 
office after the recall of the marquis, and was holding 
it when Congress returned to Philadelphia in 1790. 
M. de la Forrest was vice-consul-general. Upon the 
advent of the Robespierre faction to power, the 
troublesome citizen Genet arrived as ambassador. 
He behaved with so little prudence, or indeed pro- 
priety, that Washington demanded his recall, and 
citizen Fauchet was sent in his place. He lived at 
the corner of Twelfth and High Streets. M. de la 
Forrest again filled the office of vice-consul, which 
had been given to citizen Dupont during Genet's 
short term. Citizen Adet in 1795, and citizen Le- 
tombe in 1797, were the next consul-generals. The 
difficulties between the United States and France 
caused the withdrawal of the latter's representative 
until friendly relations were resumed. 

The country next earliest represented was Spain. 
Her first ambassador, Don Juan de Mirailles, died 
during the Revolution. Don Joseph de Viar came as 
charge d'affaires in 1790. In 1793 this gentleman 
and Don Jose' de Jaudennes were commissioners from 
Spain. Jaudennes was subsequently superseded by 
Don Carlos Martinez, Marques de Yrujo. Washing- 
ton wrote to Pickering in relation to the young mar- 
quis in 1796 : " He is a young man, very free and 
easy in his manners, professes to be well disposed 
toward the United States, and, as far as judgment 
can be formed on slight acquaintance, appears to be 
well informed." 

De Yrujo, it'has been mentioned elsewhere, mar- 
ried Miss Sally McKean. A son, afterward Marquis 
of Soto Mayer, was born in Philadelphia. De Yrujo 
in 1797-98 resided at No. 315 High Street. This was 
on the north side of the street, between Eighth and 
Ninth. The house was occupied in 1795 by Pierce 
Butler, senator from South Carolina. Don Joseph 
Ignatius de Viar continued to discharge the duties 
of commissioner or consul-general, and lived during 
the greater part of this time at the northwestern 
corner of Fourth and Prune Streets. 

The Chevalier de Freire came to Philadelphia as 
resident minister from Portugal in 1790. He was 
very wealthy, and his wife, who dressed with much 



elegance, used to appear blazing with diamonds on 
all great occasions. She was an amiable woman, 
and became quite intimate with Mrs. Washington. 
After Franklin's death De Freire rented his house 
in Franklin Court. He was a resident of Philadel- 
phia for more than ten years. Ignatius Palyart, No. 
208 South Second Street, was consul-general of Por- 

The United Netherlands were represented in 1790- 
91 by Francis P. Van Berckel, who was accredited 
to the American government while it was yet in 
New York. He resided in 1791 at No. 276 High 
Street, which was on the south side, between Eighth 
and Ninth. In 1796 his residence is put in the Di- 
rectory at No. 258 High Street. He was succeeded 
in 1796-97 by R. G. Van Polanen, who was minister 
resident. The latter remained until after 1800. Dur- 
ing the greater portion of this time the consul-gen- 
eral from the United Provinces was John H. Christo- 
pher Heineken, at No. 64 North Third Street. 

Charles Helsted was accredited consul-general from 
Sweden in 1791. He was succeeded by Richard Sod- 
erstrom, who died in Philadelphia, after many years' 
residence. In 1800 he was living in Walnut Street, 
between Seventh and Eighth Streets. 

The earliest representative of Prussia at Philadel- 
phia was John Godfrey Paleske. In 1794 he lived on 
Chestnut Street, between Tenth and Eleventh. 

In 1790-91 Great Britain accredited Sir John Tem- 
ple as her consul-general. Dr. Phineas Bond was 
her consul for Philadelphia. Dr. Bond was a native 
Philadelphian, a brother of Dr. Thomas Bond. He 
had always been a Tory, was arrested in 1777, and 
signed the parole. The government of Great Britain 
rewarded his loyalty in 1786 by appointing him Brit- 
ish consul for the Middle States. This appointment 
led to much heated debate in Congress. It made Dr. 
Bond consul and "commissioner for commercial 
affairs," and the latter title was held to cojifer some of 
the powers of a minister. He was confirmed as con- 
sul only. He was living in Philadelphia at the 
time of the affair between the " Chesapeake" and the 
" Little Belt." On that occasion a crowd of people 
marched past Dr. Bond's house and played "The 
Rogue's March." He remained in the city until hos- 
tilities commenced between Great Britain and the 
United States, in 1812, when he was compelled, after 
a life of many years in his native city, to retire in his 
old age to England, where he died. 

The first minister from Great Britain to the United 
States was George Hammond, who came here in 1793. 
He lived three years in Philadelphia, during which 
time he courted and married one of the daughters of 
Andrew Allen. He was succeeded, in 1796, by Rob- 
ert Liston, who remained in Philadelphia until the 
removal of the seat of government. Mr. Liston was 
accompanied to Washington by his secretary of lega- 
tion, Edward Thornton, father of Sir Edward Thorn- 
ton, British minister to the United States in 1880, and 

for some years before. Liston was succeeded as min- 
ister plenipotentiary in 1803 at Washington by An- 
thony Merry, who gave way, in 1806, to David M. 
Erskine. After the close of the war Charles Bagot 
was British minister from 1815 for five or six years. 
He gave way to Stratford Canning. 

Russia was represented in 1809 by Andrew Dasch- 
koff, consul-general and chargi d'affaires. He became 
minister plenipotentiary and envoy extraordinary in 
1813, and continued so until 1819. During the war 
of 1812 he offered the mediation of the emperor of 
Russia between the governments of the United States 
and Great Britain. Mr. Daschkoff was exceedingly 
popular in society. When he left the city in May, 
1819, to return to his native country, Poulson's Ad- 
vertiser, in noticing his departure, said that Mr. Dasch- 
koff and his lady would " long be remembered for the 
elegant hospitality which has distinguished their res- 
idence in this city. Rarely, if ever, has a new for- 
ei gner attracted so large a share of admiration and 
affection as Madame de Daschkoff." She was repre- 
sented to be a lady possessing talents of superior order, 
which were cultivated to perfection, and she was 
equally distinguished for her personal accomplish- 
ments and the qualities of her heart. In regard to 
Mr. Daschkoff, it was said " his own house has been 
on the most friendly and liberal establishment, and 
Americans were always received there with peculiar 
kindness and attention, as many can testify who have 
passed cheerful and happy hours under his roof." 

Mr. Daschkoff's successor was Pierre de Poletica, 
who had probably been his assistant, for, upon Mr. 
de Poletica's departure for Europe, in 1822, a public 
dinner was given to him in Philadelphia, one of the 
reasons for which was stated to be because he had 
" lived so long and had been so highly esteemed 
among us." 

Besides those already mentioned, several members 
of the diplomatic corps married in Philadelphia, 
testifying thus to the superior charms of our girls 
and their own good taste. Richard Soderstrom, con- 
sul-general of Sweden, who lived thirty-two years in 
America, spent nearly the whole of that period in 
Philadelphia, where he married and left children. 
He died in 1815, and was buried in the old Swedish 
churchyard, in Southwark. Baron de Kantzow was 
appointed minister resident of Sweden in 1814. Ber- 
nard Dahlgren was Swedish vice-consul. In 1808 he 
was married to Miss Martha Rowan, of Philadelphia. 
He never returned to Europe. He was the ancestor 
of Admiral John A. Dahlgren, of the United States 
navy, and of Col. Ulrich Dahlgren, who was killed 
during an attempted raid on Richmond in 1864. 

P. Pederson, charge d'affaires for Denmark in 
1805, was minister resident in 1816, and lived in 
Philadelphia until 1825. He married a lady of 
Philadelphia, who died in Europe while on a visit 
there in 1815. In May, 1820, Mr. Pederson was 
again married, by Bishop White, to Miss Annie 



Caroline, eldest daughter of William Langdon Smith, 
of South Carolina. 

The new South American republic of Columbia 
was represented by Don Manuel Torres, minister 
plenipotentiary, who made West Philadelphia his 
residence. He died at Hamiltonville in July, 1822, 
and was honored with a military funeral, on which 
occasion the Washington Grays and some of the 
companies of the Washington Guards turned out. 

In addition to the persons in the diplomatic ser- 
vice, there were, at the close of the last century and 
the beginning of the present, other foreign residents 
of some distinction. Philadelphia was also visited 
during those years by many travelers who were dis- 
tinguished either for eminence attained in their pro- 
fessions or by reason of their birth. The names of 
some are of historic interest. 

Baron de Brahm (John William Gerard), a German 
officer of some merit, came to the United States at the 
end of the century. He had quiet tastes, and, charmed 
with the peaceful aspect of Germantown, he settled 
there. He married a member of the Society of 
Friends. The year of his death is not known, but 
his widow, Mary de Brahm, died in February, 1806. 
There was another person of almost similar name, — 
Andreas Everandus von Braam Honchgust, — who 
had been the Governor of a Dutch East India island. 
He bought a place on the Delaware, three miles 
below Bristol, and erected there a costly mansion, to 
which he gave the name of China Retreat. In later 
times it has been known as Bristol College. 

Another old soldier, Baron Col. Frederick H. de 
Weissenfels, a native of Prussia, who had served in 
his own country, then in the British army, and finally 
in the Continental army, had settled in Philadelphia. 
He died there in February, 1806. 

In the early part of the century there came to 
Philadelphia a man who soon attained social dis- 
tinction, while, strange to say, there hung over his 
origin and antecedents a veil of mystery, never pene- 
trated even by his most intimate acquaintances. This 
was Talbot Hamilton, believed by some to be a Scotch- 
man, by others an Englishman, who first came into 
notice as a teacher in a country school, the academy 
at Lower Dublin, from which he resigned in 1802, to 
take charge of a school in Hamilton village. In 1807 
he established a private academy for young ladies 
back of No. 34 Church Alley, which he directed for 
about ten years. A man of fine education and ac- 
knowledged merit, he formed acquaintance with the 
most cultivated people and moved in the best society. 
His tastes were artistic, and, having acquired wealth, 
he accumulated a valuable collection of paintings 
and a good library. He was a member of the Philo- 
sophical Society, of the Athenaeum, and of the Acad- 
emy of Fine Arts. He went abroad in 1820, and died 
at Naples in April of that year. Upon the opening 
of his will it was found that he had bequeathed his 
fine collection of paintings to the Academy of Fine 

Arts and part of his library to the Athenasum. In 
noticing his death, Poulson's paper said, "Of his 
early history nothing is known. In his freest conver- 
sation an impenetrable veil was thrown over his 
early career." 

Philadelphia had seen French noblemen, the very 
flower of that aristocracy which, notwithstanding its 
many faults, was admired for its chivalrous courage 
and elegance of manner ; she had seen the sincere 
patriot and the demagogue ; she had opened her hos- 
pitable doors to a future king of France; she was now 
to see some members of that Corsican family whose 
eldest son, himself sitting on the throne of the Bour- 
bons, placed brother after brother on the thrones of 
the countries conquered by his military genius, frail 
monuments of an insane ambition, which were des- 
tined to crumble into the dust of oblivion long before 
the young American republic would attain its full 
growth or the last of Washington's companions pass 
away from the face of the earth. Jerome, the young- 
est of the Bonapartes, whom his brother Napoleon 
had placed in command of a French frigate, came to 
Philadelphia in 1803, and lodged at the old Indian 
Queen Hotel, in Fourth Street. He did not remain 
very long, and, to all appearance, did not make much 
impression on the Philadelphia belles, although he 
was a handsome young fellow, with a soft heart and 
a softer head. He went to Baltimore, where he was 
more successful, for he there won the heart and hand 
of Miss Elizabeth Patterson, the fascinating daughter 
of William Patterson, merchant. The young couple 
passed through Philadelphia in 1804, on their way 
to New York, where they were to embark upon 
Jerome's frigate, " Le President." The presence of 
some English cruisers off Sandy Hook making the 
voyage unsafe, they returned and took passage on the 
"Philadelphia," bound to Cadiz, Spain; but this 
vessel meeting with a heavy gale in Delaware Bay, 
Jerome and his wife were landed at Pilot Town and 
came back to Philadelphia. They finally returned 
to Baltimore, and succeeded in sailing from that port 
in the spring of 1805. It seems as though Miss 
Patterson's good genius had tried so long to put ob- 
stacles to their departure as a warning of the bitter 
fate which awaited her in Europe. It were idle to 
recount here the story of the young wife's wrongs, to 
tell how the weak husband succumbed to Napoleon's 
stern will, and renounced the wife he had sworn to 
love and protect. This American girl did not pine 
and die of a broken heart, neither did she gratify the 
desire of the omnipotent emperor, and consider her- 
self simple Miss Patterson. She never abdicated her 
rights, but retained proudly the name of Mrs. Bona- 
parte. She bore it, unsullied by any act of hers, 
until her death, at an advanced age, and during her 
long, lonely life she saw the mighty Napoleon hurled 
from his imperial throne, his brothers wanderers upon 
the earth, and himself a prisoner, released only by 
death. She lived to see the ephemeral restoration of 



the Bonaparte dynasty, and her own grandson greeted 
as a cousin by the third Napoleon. She saw the fall 
of the second empire and France a republic. 

Jerome Bonaparte was a weak, pleasure-loving, 
dissipated young man, who held his eldest brother in 
great awe. Napoleon kept him in leading-strings ; 
having made him behave so infamously to his Amer- 
ican wife, he rewarded him with the crown of West- 
phalia, — that is, he made him, as he did others, a 
nominal king, who was to do the bidding of the em- 
peror of the French. An anecdote of the time will 
show what sort of a character was young Jerome. 
He had some boon companions, with whom he often 
sought relief from the forced dignity of his brother's 
court. One of these was Pigault-Lebrun, the writer of 
erotic novels ; the other, whose name has escaped our 
memory, a young poet of the same cloth. The em- 
peror had just told Jerome that he had made him 
king of Westphalia ; the young man, on leaving the 
imperial presence, like one dazed by a sudden vision 
of grandeur, met his two friends, and hastened to tell 
them the great news. " You will cast us aside," said 
Lebrun. "Never!" cried the new king. "Never! 
my dear friends ! You must come with me; you will 
be the highest dignitaries of my court. Come, let us 
go and dine together ; we will talk the matter over." 
The trio stepped into the nearest restaurant, asked for 
a private room, and ordered a sumptuous feast. By 
the time the dessert was brought in it had been ar- 
ranged that Pigault-Lebrun would be lord chancellor, 
and X, minister of finances of the new kingdom. 
Then began an animated discussion of the laws and 
measures to be introduced, and many a bottle of wine 
was drunk to stimulate the eloquence of the three 
friends. At last the dinner was over, and the host, 
made somewhat uneasy by the great consumption of 
liquids to be charged to these young strangers, came 
in with his bill. Jerome took out his purse. Alas I 
it did not contain half the sum required. As to his 
friends, they respected the tradition, and were, like 
true authors, absolutely penniless. X, who already 
felt all the importance of his office, waved his hand 
grandly to the proprietor of the restaurant, saying, 
" Have no fear, my good man ; I will see that your 
bill is paid to-morrow." " Hum, I don't know who 
you are, sir!" "I am the High Treasurer of the 
Kingdom of Westphalia." " And I, the High Chan- 
cellor of Westphalia," chimed in Lebrun, in a husky 
voice, "indorse the promise of Monsieur the Treas- 
urer." " Indeed," sneered the exasperated creditor, 
" those are your titles, messieurs ! And I suppose that 
tipsy rogue yonder is the King of Westphalia?" " I 
am the man," hiccoughed Jerome, who was vainly 
trying to keep his eyes open. Mine host, no longer 
doubtful that he had to deal with three swindlers, 
sent for the police, who marched the three friends to 
the oflice of the " commissaire." There, luckily, some 
one was found who knew Jerome, and the matter was 
adjusted, but by the next day the emperor knew all 

the particulars of this adventure. Great was his 
wrath. He ordered Jerome to depart immediately 
for his kingdom, and Pigault-Lebrun and X were 
forbidden from having anything to do with organ- 
izing the court of Westphalia. 

Another Bonaparte (Joseph, ex-king of Spain) came 
to Philadelphia some years later, about 1815. He is 
said to have lived in Capt. John Savage's house; on 
Ninth Street, and subsequently in John Beale Bord- 
ley's house, No. 7 Union Street ; but his residence of 
a permanent character was at Lansdowne, the coun- 
try-seat of the Binghams, on the west side of the 
Schuylkill, the grounds of which are now included in 
Fairmount Park. Samuel Breck records in his diary, 
under date of April 20, 1816, that he was informed 
that " the ex-king of Spain, Joseph Bonaparte, had 
hired Lansdowne House for one year and was already 
established in the mansion." He must have remained 
there for more than one year, — probably for two years. 
Breck records, under date of Sept. 1, 1817, that Julia 
Rush, daughter of Dr. Benjamin Bush, who after- 
wards married Henry J. Williams, informed him that 
she had lately dined at Joseph Bonaparte's. After 
this he leased John Dunlap's house, at the southeast 
corner of Market and Twelfth Streets, where he lived 
until 1825. He had purchased in the mean time 
some land near Bordentown, N. J., where he built a 
fine mansion as a summer residence. This place, 
called " Point Breeze," was tastefully arranged, and 
the house contained many valuable works of art, stat- 
uary, paintings, etc. It was destroyed by fire in 1820. 
The people in the neighborhood rendered every pos- 
sible assistance in the effort to save the property, and 
Mr. Bonaparte afterwards sent a letter of thanks to 
one of the magistrates of Bordentown, in which he 
bore grateful testimony to the kindness and honesty 
of the people, declaring that — 

" all the furniture, statues, pictures, money, plate, gold, jewels, linen, 
books, and, in short, everything that was not consumed, has beeu most 
scrupulously delivered into the hands of the people of my house. In 
the night of the fire, and during the next day, there were brought to 
me, by laboring men, drawers in which I found the proper quantity of 
pieces of money, medals of gold, and valuable jewels, which might have 
been taken with impunity." i 

Another Frenchman, very little in sympathy with 
the Bonapartes, made Philadelphia his home in 1805. 
Gen. Jean Victor Moreaux, banished from France for 
an alleged participation in the plot of Pichegru and 
Cadoudal against the life of the first consul, was held 
to be the greatest general of the French republic next 
to Bonaparte, and even by many considered his equal. 
His guilt, stoutly denied by himself, was generally 
doubted, and his disgrace was attributed to Bona- 
parte's jealousy of the hero of Rastadt, Etlingen, and 
Hohenlinden. Soon after his arrival the citizens of 
Philadelphia gave Gen. Moreau a public dinner. He 
petitioned the Legislature of Pennsylvania for per- 
mission to hold real-estate in the commonwealth. 
This request, refused at first, was subsequently 
granted, and Moreau purchased part of the Robert 



Morris property at Morrisville, in Bucks County. 
On the 17th of April, 1811, Gen. Moreau entered his 
declaration of becoming a citizen of the United States, 
in the office of the clerk of the Circuit Court at Phil- 
adelphia. Whether he became fully naturalized is a 
matter of doubt, but Gen. Moreau returned to Europe 
in 1813, upon the invitation of the czar of Russia and 
the kings of Sweden and Prussia. While standing 
near the Emperor Alexander, at the battle of Dresden 
(Aug. 27, 1813) he had both of his legs broken by a 
cannon-ball from the French batteries. He died five 
days later. In 1816, Moreau's property in Morris- 
ville was sold for account of his wife and daughter, 
and it realized fifty-two thousand dollars. 

[From an original drawing.] 

About the same year (1805) David Parrish, of Ant- 
werp, established himself in Philadelphia as agent of 
the Hopes, bankers, to effect a transfer to Europe, 
under the American flag, of silver which was on de- 
posit in Mexico. He lived in fine style at No. 228 
Walnut Street, then at No. 152 Walnut Street, Sam- 
son's Eow, and finally in the fine house No. 1 York 
Row, at the southwest corner of Walnut Street and 
Columbia Avenue, now called Washington Square, 
which was afterward occupied by Dr. McClellan and 
Josiah Randall. In the United States he operated 
through the mercantile houses of Willing and Fran- 
cis and others. Stephen Girard was at one time 
correspondent of the Hopes and the Barings. 

John Dunlap's house was one of the finest in the 
city, and had connected with it almost a square of 
ground, extending from Market to Chestnut Street, 

and from Eleventh to Twelfth. South of it, on 
Twelfth Street, were two dwelling-houses, in one of 
which Robert Morris, the financier of the Revolution, 
lived and died. The other was occupied by Paul 
Busti, merchant." John Dunlap's house was built in 
1790, and the roof covered more distinguished resi- 
dents than almost any other house in the city, as the 
following list of some of the tenants will show : 

1791. Edmund Randolph, Attorney-General of the 
United States. 

1792. Chevalier Jean De Ternant, minister of the 
French Republic to the United States. 

1793. Citizen Edwin Charles Genet, minister of the 
French Republic to the United States. 

1794. Joseph Fanchet, min- 
ister of the French Republic 
to the United States. 

1795. M. Adet, minister of 
the French Republic to the 
United States. 

1797. Capt. John Dunlap, 
1815. Baron De Kantzow, 

minister from Sweden to the 

United States. 

1817. Joseph Bonaparte, 

Count De Survilliers, ex-king 

of Spain. 

1824. Charles Lucien Bona- 
parte, prince of Canino and 
Mussignano, son of Lucien 
Bonaparte, with his wife, Prin- 
cess Zenaide Charlotte Julie, 
daughter of Joseph Bonaparte. 

1825. Dr. John Y. Clark, 
husband of Baroness Lalle- 
mand, a niece of Stephen 
Girard, with that lady. Girard 
then the owner of the house. 

1829. Stephen F. Nidelet. 
After the death of Ste- 
phen Girard the Dunlap house 
was torn down and the whole 
square improved under direction of the Girard Trust. 
In 1808, Richard Penn, Lieutenant-Governor before 
the Revolution, returned from England, whither he 
had gone at the beginning of the war. He brought 
with him his son William and his daughter Hannah, 
and remained a little over a year in Philadelphia, 
looking after his landed interests. It was during this 
visit that young William Penn married a beautiful 
girl, Julia Catherine Balabrega, a native of Philadel- 
phia. Though perfectly respectable, the bride's pa- 
rents were of a lower station in life than that held by 
the Penns, and great was the scandal among those 
who entertained aristocratic prejudices. But William 
had consulted only his own happiness. He let so- 
ciety declaim about his misalliance, and took his young 
wife to England, where they lived happily until his 



Many travelers visited Philadelphia in the early 
part of the century, most of whom published their 
observations. Robert Sutcliff, an English Quaker, 
who had a brother and a cousin living in Philadel- 
phia, came to examine the resources of the country, 
and was so well pleased that he went back for his 
family, and brought them over in 1811. Unfortu- 
nately, he died in the same year; but during his first 
visit he had not been idle, and in the year following 
his death his manuscripts were published under the 
title of " Travels in Some Parts of North America in 
the years 1804-6." Sutcliff was a man of correct 
judgment and little given to exaggeration ; his com- 
ments are sensible, and his narrative interesting. 

Charles William Jansen published " The Stranger 
in America" at London, 1807. His observations em- 
brace the period from 1793 to 1806. Jansen, in his 
title-page, styles himself " Counselor-at-law, late of 
the State of Rhode Island." 

Vincent Nolte, a native of Leghorn, resided some 
time in Philadelphia, and was connected with David 
Parrish. He had traveled extensively, and was 
called " a restless cosmopolite," having resided alter- 
nately in Asia, Europe, and America. In his work 
entitled " Fifty Years in Both Hemispheres," pub- 
lished in 1854, he relates several anecdotes in connec- 
tion with his residence here. 

John Melish published "Travels in the United 
States of America," in the years 1806-11 ; " A De- 
scription of the United States," in 1816 ; and " A 
Statistical View of the United States," in 1822. He 
was a native of Scotland, and after traveling exten- 
sively through this country settled in Philadelphia, 
where he engaged extensively in the publication of 
maps and geographical and statistical works. He 
died in Philadelphia, Dec. 30, 1822. 

Felix de Beaujour, for some time consul-general of 
France in Philadelphia, wrote in French a very im- 
portant work, illustrated with tables and valuable 
statements, concerning the agriculture, commerce, and 
manufactures of the country. His observations of 
Philadelphia society are written in a spirit of fairness 
and impartiality. His book was translated into 
English, and published in London in 1814, under 
the title of " Sketch of the United States of America, 
from 1800 to 1810." 

Henry Ker wrote a very fair book, " Travels 
through the Western Interior of the United States, 
from the year 1808 to 1816." 

F. Cuming published in 1810 " Sketches of a Tour 
to the Western Country, Down the Ohio," etc., com- 
menced in 1807. Commencing his trip at Philadel- 
phia, he says nothing of the appearance of the town, 
because, he alleges, " he did not think it worth 
while to describe the city, which had already been 
very fully described by others." As, however, he had 
to cross the Schuylkill by a bridge, he described it 
pretty fully, as well as the floating bridge at the 
upper ferry. 

Lieut. Francis Hall, of the Fourteenth Light Dra- 
goons, published " Travels in Canada and the United 
States in 1815-17." His book is entertaining and fair 
in judgment. The North American Review said of 
him, " He has good sense enough to think that a 
country is not to be judged by its tavern-keepers and 
hostlers, and too much good humor to rail at a whole 
people because he meets with occasional instances of 
fraud and churlishness." 

Of a different temper was Henry Bradshaw Fearon, 
a London surgeon, who visited this country about 
1816-17. He was evidently prepared to criticise and 
denounce everything he saw. His observations were 
printed in " A Narrative of a Journey of Five Thou- 
sand Miles through the Eastern and Western States 
of America." His work created a great deal of irri- 
tation in this country. Even the London Monthly 
Review noticed his " tone of ill-temper," while Syd- 
ney Smith, who was no lover of America, was com- 
pelled to admit in the Edinburgh Review that Mr. 
Fearon was " a little given to exaggerate in his views 
of vices and prejudices." 

John Palmer published in London in 1818 "A 
Journal of Travels in the United States of North 
America and in Lower Canada in 1817." Sydney 
Smith said of him, " He is a plain man, of good sense 
and slow judgment." Palmer came from Lynn, Nor- 
folk, England. 

William Tell Harris wrote " Remarks made during 
a Tour through the United States of America," a fair 
book ; and Emma Howitt, a lover of nature and a 
member of the Society of Friends, published some 
interesting " Selections from Letters written during a 
Tour through the United States in the Summer and 
Autumn of 1818-19." 

Baron Von Humboldt, the celebrated naturalist 
and traveler, made a flying visit to Philadelphia, in 
1804, with his friends Von Bonpland and Montufar, 
with whom he had explored South America and the 
Andes Mountains. The travelers were on their way 
to Washington, where they called on President Jef- 
ferson, who received them with great distinction. 

A great excitement in literary circles was created 
in 1804, by the coming of the poet, Thomas Moore. 
He had received the appointment of registrar of the 
British Admiralty in the island of Bermuda, but after 
taking possession of the office, he found that his du- 
ties might be performed by a deputy, and did not re- 
quire his personal attention. He determined then to 
return to England by the way of the United States, 
for to a man of his temperament residence in the 
quiet island of Bermuda was little better than exile. 
Moore remained about ten days in Philadelphia, 
and if he had a poet's weakness for praise and flat- 
tery he must have left more than satisfied. The 
poetical squad connected with the Portfolio lauded 
their foreign confrere with so much exaggeration that 
their praise might have been mistaken for satire. 
The flattering attentions he received in Philadelphia 



were so pleasing to Mr. Moore, that he made this city 
an exception in the general condemnation of things 
American. His preconceived opinion of the United 
States reveals itself in a letter to his mother, dated 
Baltimore, June 13, 1804, when he says, — 

" I shall leave this placn for Philadelphia to-morrow or the day after. 
I shall see there poor Edward Hudson, who, if I am rightly informed, 
has married the daughter of a very rich bookseller, and is taken into 
partnership by the father. Surely, surely this country must have 
cured him of Republicanism !" 

In a letter dated Philadelphia, June 16th, he says, — 

" I have seen Edward Hudson. The rich bookseller I had heard of is 
Pat Byrne, whose daughter Hudson has married. They are, I believe, 
doing well." 


Some days later he wrote her from Passaic, as fol- 

"Among other things, my reception at Philadelphia was extremely 
flattering. It is the only place in America that can boast of a literary 
society, and my name had prepossessed them more strongly than I de- 
served. But their affectionate attentions went far beyond this defer- 
ence to reputation. I was quite caressed while there, and their auxiety 
to make me known by introductory letters to all their friends on my 
way, and two or three little poems of a very nattering kiud, which some 
of their choicest men addressed to me, all went so warmly to my heart 
that I felt quite a regret in leaving them ; and the ouly place I have 
seen which I had one wish to pause in was in Philadelphia." 

In a letter from Saratoga, dated July 10, 1804, 
he says that the poem, " Alone by the Schuylkill a 
wanderer roved," was written after he left Phila- 
delphia, and that he was not very certain as to the 
situation or course of that river. He says, — 

"Dear mother, I know you will be pleased with the little poem I 
wrote on my way from Philadelphia. It was written very much as a 
return for the kindness I met with there, hut chiefly in allusion to a 
very charming little woman — Mrs. Hopkinson — who was extremely in- 
terested by my songs, and who flattered me with many attentions. You 
must observe that the Schuylkill is a river which runs by, or (I believe, 
through), Philadelphia." 

Nearly a month had elapsed since Moore's depar- 
ture from Philadelphia, when the Portfolio mentioned 
his visit, and published " Alone by the Schuylkill a 
wanderer roved." To the passage in these verses, 

" Like eyes that he loved were her eloquent eyes, 
Like them did they soften and weep at his song," 

was appended a note in which it was stated that 
those lines alluded to the circumstance that in a 
certain company where Moore sang a song, " a lady 
wept." This lady was Mrs. Joseph Hopkinson, whom 
Moore mentioned in the letter above quoted. 

The Portfolio of July 28th contained five poems by 
Thomas Moore : " When Time, who steals our years 
away;" "Thy song has taught my heart to feel;" 
" Dear, in pity do not speak I" "Good-night! good- 
night ! and is it so 1" and " When the heart's feeling." 
On August 11th was published " Loud sung the 
wind," and "The sorrow long has worn my heart." 
Everybody went into raptures over these songs, and 
the Portfolio said, by its editor, Dennie, Aug. 25, 

" The ardent admirers of Mr. Moore cherish a lively hope that the 
fascinating friend and the sweet poet, after enjoying the hospitality of 
his countrymen in the British provinces, will shortly return to gladden 
the social and literary circles on the bankB of the Delaware. The editor 
will greet him with that warmth of welcome which the presence of such 
a friend inspires; and many an Horatian spirit will exclaim, — 
"' Hinc tibi copia 
Manahit ad plenum benigno 
Hurls honorum opulenta cornu,' etc." 

A short time after several pieces of poetry in lauda- 
tion of the " Translator of Anacreon" were published 
in the Portfolio. 

But the American public at large, who might have 
shared the Philadelphians' admiration of Moore, were 
greatly disappointed when the "Epistles, Odes, and 
other Poems," by Thomas Moore, were published in 
1806. This volume of poetry contained notes to some 
of the compositions, which referred to the author's 
experience in the United States in a manner little 
palatable to the sensitive American mind. Philadel- 
phia, as we have already remarked, escaped his cen- 
sure. He said, in reference to his visit here, — 

"In the society of Mr. Dennie and his friends at Philadelphia I passed 
the only agreeable moments which my tour through the States afforded 
me. Mr. Dennie has succeeded in diffusing through this elegant little 
circle that love for good literature and sound politics which he feels so 
zealously himself, and which is so very rarely the characteristic of his 
countrymen. They will not, I trust, accuse me of illiberality for the 
picture I have given of the ignorance and corruption that surround 
them. If I did not hate as I ought the rabble to which they are op- 
posed, I could not value as I do the spirit with which they defy it; and 
in learning from them what Americans can be, I but see with the more 
indignation what Americans are.' 1 

Many were the sharp replies of the American crit- 
ics, and some very uncomplimentary things were said 
to and of Mr. Moore. Of a different temper was the 
ingenious revenge of a critic in the Literary Magazine, 
who published the following choice morceau as if writ- 
ten by Moore himself; until the hoax was discovered 
the Philadelphians were indignant : 

"Philadelphia is the most dull, monotonous, uninteresting city on the 
face of the globe, whose positive advantages it would take a Solomon to 
discover. The negative catalogue, however, is not so scanty. It wants 
more chnrcheB, markets, and coffee-houses. Its churches, few as they 
are, want steepleR, and their steeples want bells. They also want audi- 
ences, and their audiences want zeal. Their choirs want singers, and 



their singers want voices. Their markets want space, air, and shelter, 
and their coffee-houses want room, dignity, und convenience. The 
streets want variety, being too uniformly wide and straight. Of the 
only curved streets, one is too narrow and the other is too wide. In the 
one the houses are too high, and in the other they are too low. Where 
the houses are dissimilar they are too dissimilar ; where they are alike 
they are too much alike. The city wants more hotels. The few there 
are are dirty, noisy, dark, and inconvenient. The Btreets have too many 
trees, but little ebade. Their foot-pavements are 6mooth where smooth- 
ness is least wanted, and their carriage-wayB are rough where rough- 
nesB is most troublesome. In a town of eighty thousand people many 
must go a mile to market, and as far to church. The best and most 
busy streets are twice a week crowded for half a day together with 
horses and carts. The principal street is lined all the year round with 
wagons, which Berve the purpose, while moving, of ships ; while stand- 
ing, of stalls and inns. And the street lias all the furniture of a stable- 

"Philadelphia has two theatreB, one of which is very much in the 
style of a barn, is placed in the dirty and obscene skirts of the city, and 
is at least a mile from the habitation of two-thirds of the inhabitants. 
It is only opened occasionally, on the arrival of a company of mounte- 
banks, jugglers, or rope-dancers. The other is opened half the year, 
and about one in two hundred of the people frequent it each night of 
exhibition, which takes place twice or thrice a week. 

" Everything in this city is in a state of revolution. The only house 
which deserved the name of a genteel or fashionable residence was lately 
turned into a tavern. The house occupied by Washington and Adams 
in the days of their sovereignty underwent the same fate. A house de- 
signed as a palace for the Governor of the State has lately become a 
college, and the hall of the Revolutionary Congress is now a depository 
for stuffed birds and beasts. 

"The only magnificent buildings are characteristic of the genius of 
the place : they are money-shops, vulgarly called banks. One of them is 
a masB of hewn marble, disposed most ridiculously into the form of a 
Grecian-Ionic temple, thus exemplifying the most preposterous incon- 
gruity between the form and the purpose. The other is not liable to 
this objection, but is built, in the interior, of such materials that a ran- 
dom spark would soon reduce the whole into a heap of ruins." 

Whether the stranger in Philadelphia, coming with 
good introduction, mingled with the "best society,'' 
and could observe closely the beauty of the women 
and the manners of the men, or, being of a philo- 
sophical and practical turn of mind, gave his atten- 
tion to facts and figures, and prepared statistics for 
publication, or being a mere wanderer, unknown and 
unwelcomed, he passed unnoticed through the crowd, 
he must have found subjects for amusement, and often 
for wonderment if he came from a distant clime, in 
the street noises and sights that greeted his ears and 
eyes at every step. Early in the morning, in the 
period between 1825 and 1835, he would be startled 
by the blasts of a horn, followed by an effort at vocal 
music, in which he might catch the words, — 

" Charcoal by the bushel ; 
Charcoal by the peck ; 
Charcoal by the frying-pan, 
Or any way you lech /" 

Looking out he would see " Jimmy Charcoal," the 
New Jersey man, sitting on his long, narrow wagon, 
all grimy with the dust of his merchandise, yet look- 
ing out with a bright eye for the housemaids, who 
hastened to the door at the well-known sound of the 
horn. For wherever stone-coal was used charcoal 
was the proper thing, and if it was summer the 
housekeeper preferred the charcoal furnace for out- 
door use to the kitchen stove, which heated the house 
unpleasantly.- The charcoal venders always came 

from New Jersey, and Jimmy was, of them all, the 
most popular with the maids, because of his engaging 
manners, pleasant jokes, and musical talent. The 
blowing of the horn, however, became a nuisance, and 
was prohibited by an ordinance of the City Councils, 
which was adopted principally in consequence of Paul 
Beck's exertions. Charcoal Jimmy persisted in using 
the proscribed instrument, was arrested and made to 
pay a fine. He considered himself an aggrieved man : 
how was he to announce his approach if he did not 
blow his horn? Suddenly his countenance lighted 
up ; if he did not exclaim " Eureka !" it was because 
he did not know the meaning of the word, and be- 
sides he wisely kept his own counsel. The next day 
the loud ringing of a bell in the street brought all 
heads out. Jimmy alternated his ringing with this 
improved version of his song : 

" Charcoal by the bushel ; 
Charcoal by the peck ; 
Charcoal by the barrel, 
In spite of Paul Beck." 

There was no law against bell-ringing, and Jimmy 
was permitted to use in place his substitute for the 
" blasted horn." 

Scarcely would the charcoal-man's song die away, 
when the cry "Sweep, ohl Sweep, oh I" reminded 
the housekeepers that they would have to pay a fine 
of forty shillings if their chimney took fire in conse- 
quence of their neglecting to have it swept once a 
month. If it did take fire notwithstanding the 
sweeping, the master-sweep paid the fine for having 
done his work negligently. The sweeps were gen- 
erally negroes, upon whose dusky faces the soot did 
not show. The master-sweep had generally about 
half a dozen boys for his aids. These little blacks 
went up the whole length of the chimney, scraping 
and brushing the soot on their way, and when they 
reached the top popped out their woolly heads, pro- 
tected by a coarse cloth cap, and shouted their cry of 

In the street below, as if to remind the sweep of 
the ablutions he would have to go through and the 
amount of scrubbing it would take to get the black 
dust off from his tattered garments and his ebony 
skin, the soapseller's melodious voice would respond, 
" Soft-soap ! soap ! soft-soap !" and the hardy colored 
man would look up at the grinning little black face, 
with teeth of dazzling white and merry eyes, peeping 
from the chimney-top, nod and resume his march, 
trundling his wheelbarrow upon which stood the 
heavy barrel of soft-soap. The brick-dust vender, 
generally an old negro man or woman, followed, car- 
rying, poised upon the head, the small tub of fine- 
pounded " salmon" brick, used to clean knives and 
forks and all sorts of brass implements. A frequent 
companion to the brick-dust seller was the sand-man, 
whose melancholy voice invited you from afar to 
" Sand your kitchens ! Sand your floors 1" 
Crossing the path of these humble bread-winners, 



and avoiding all contact with charcoal or brick-dust, 
the trim baker, his head and coat-collar as well pow- 
dered with flour as those of a fashionable gentleman, 
sped on silently, carrying his covered basket of fresh 
loaves, or, if his business was extensive, pushing his 
hand-cart from door to door. The baker was a very 
important man, for housekeepers did not have such 
kitchen ranges as they have now, and, especially in 
the summer, they relied on the baker's hot ovens for 
the baking of their pies and cake and the roasting of 
their meats and fowls. The charge was so much per 
dish, and in thickly settled neighborhoods the baker 
did a good business. The aristocratic milkman rat- 
tled past in his light wagon, his bright cedar churns 
with hoops of shining brass standing by his side. 
Having dispensed the required quantum of fresh 
country milk and cream to his customers in time for 
breakfast, he would drive leisurely home, or perhaps 
stop at the tavern and refresh himself after his early 
drive of several miles. There were also milk-stands 
in the neighborhood of the markets, where people 
went for their supply of milk, and where, in the sum- 
mer time, housekeepers going to market could pur- 
chase that refreshing preparation, curds-and-whey. 
After a time ice-cream and lemonade made a formid- 
able competition to the curds. A Frenchman named 
Boux was the first to sell them in the market. 

The muffin-man came at a much later period. He 
followed his trade in the latter part of the day or in 
the dusk of the evening. The tinkle of his little 
bell was a familiar sound at which the expectant 
housekeeper gave the signal for supper to be put on 
the table, for now she was sure of a dish of delicious 
hot muffins. In 1813, P. Metham had his Yorkshire 
muffin bakery at No. 9 Knight's Court, Cherry Street, 
near Ninth. He had perfected the arrangement of 
the long basket in which he carried his muffins, so 
that they were kept warm to the last. He was very 
extensively patronized. 

"Soap-fat and hickory ashes" was a cry often 
heard in the alleys upon which the yard-gates and 
kitchen doors opened. The 'ash man,' who drove an 
important business when wood was generally burned, 
thus announced his coming to the servant-girls, who 
kept for him the ashes and fats from the kitchen, 
their usual perquisites. They received in exchange 
a piece or a bar of hard, yellow soap, for no money 
ever changed hands in these transactions.' Some 
families saved their fats and ashes and manufactured 
their own soap, an easy operation, made still easier 
nowadays by the use of concentrated lyes. 

Hominy, made from broken maize, the kernel being 
hulled, was an Indian food which was taken to the 
tables of the blacks. White people learned to like 
this healthy preparation. There were tables at the 
ends of the markets, where it was sold by colored 
people, the grain being put up in bags, ready for 
transfer to the market-basket. About 1828 the orig- 
inal hominy man made his appearance. He was 

middle-aged, stout, had a broad face and short gray 
side-whiskers. He carried a large basket, which was 
stocked with parcels of prepared hominy. His care 
was to make a business for himself, and he traversed 
all parts of the town, seeking customers and an- 
nouncing his presence. He had a clear, strong, res- 
onant voice, — tenore robusto they would call it on the 
operatic stage, — and his refrain could be heard at a 
great distance, — 

" Hominy man come out to-day 
For to sell bis homiim?/." 

This he would vary by an occasional notice, — 

" Hominy man is on bis way 
For to Bell his good honiinap." 


This person became quite a town character, and 
was known to everybody. The original " hominy 
man" long since left these peaceful scenes for another 
world. He was succeeded by one upon whom his 
mantle had fallen. The man who in 1883 solicits 
custom in the old way is the third or fourth in 
succession from the original hominy man. 

The unwary stranger might be startled by the sud- 
den shooting down of a cord of wood from the cart 
upon the cobble-stones, and the cry of " Way, piler 1" 
with which the wood-sawyer would interrupt the 
rasping sound of his hand-saw, to warn his comrade 
in the cellar that another armful of sawed sticks was 
ready. Or he would look wonderingly at the brawny 
fellow walking past, with a huge axe over his shoul- 



der, from which implement hung two iron wedges, 
which jingled together and made a ringing noise at 
every motion. But the fellow bellowed, with sten- 
torian lungs, "Spli-t wood!" and thereby revealed 
his professional character. The wood-sawyer divided 
the logs and long sticks into short billets, but it was 
the wood-splitter's business to split a portion of these 
for kindling-wood, unless some male member of the 
family had industry enough to do it. What changes 
modern progress has brought! Everything is done 
now by machinery. There is saving of money and 
increased comfort to the consumer, but how many 
humble trades by which the poor made an honest 
living have been destroyed I But the voice of the 
wood-splitter is drowned by the more powerful roar 
of the driver of the oyster-cart, "Ah yer oys-ta-oh ! 
yer the go ! oys-ta-oh I" Besides this perambulating 
oyster-man, there were stands and tables at the cor- 
ners of the markets and other well-thronged places 
for the sale of stewed oysters. The oyster-cellar is of 
more modern discovery. 

In the spring of the year the shrill voice of the fe- 
male fish-huckster might be heard announcing the 
advent of the shad, dear to gourmands, " You buy 
an-ey sha-a-d?" Later in the year her cry changed 
to, " You buy any pe-e-rch 1" " Buy any blackfish ?" 
or " You buy any ca-a-t-fish ?" But, if the season 
was dull, the same voice might be recognized, crying, 
"You buy any cherries?" or "You buy any straw- 
ber-ees?" and, still later in the season, "Buy any 
peaches ?" to the legitimate fruit-huckster's disgust. 
Watermelons, cantaloups, apples, and peaches were 
generally sold on the streets by men, who, as they 
drove their well-filled carts around, thought it their 
duty to call the attention of buyers by terrific yells 
that would make a nervous man take to his heels : 
" Here's your ripe, freestone peaches ! Here they go, 
three fips a half-peck, oh !" or " Sweet, mellow apples 
at a levy a half-peck, oh !" 

Fleeing this pandemonium of sounds, avoiding the 
old cake-woman at the corner only to run into the 
scissors-grinder and his grinding-machine, whose 
whirling sound, as he busily works the treadle with 
his foot, is lost in the prevailing din, the bewil- 
dered stranger turns, perhaps, towards the wharves 
where numerous vessels are loading and unloading, 
for the commerce of the port of Philadelphia at that 
time was greater than that of New York. " In 1800 
there were forty ships engaged in the East India and 
China trade, over one hundred ships which made 
voyages regularly between Philadelphia and various 
European ports, and twenty-five ships in the West 
India trade. There were brigs and smaller vessels 
also engaged in this traffic, so that the foreign com- 
merce may be assumed to have given employment to 
at least two hundred large vessels. The coasting 
trade was also valuable." 1 As the stranger ap- 

1 Westcott's History of Philadelphia. 

proaches the river, a strange chorus greets his 

" Eo ! ro ! ro ! ro ! around the corner, Sally I" 
chant the voices; and another chorus strikes out 
with admirable effect, — 

" Nancy Bohannan, she married a barber ; 
Shave her away 1 shave her away 1 
He shaved all he could, he could not shave harder ; 
Shave her away 1 shave her away I" 

The singers are the black stevedores, who thus 
lighten and facilitate the work of loading the vessels, 
their joint efforts being guided by the rhythmic ar- 
rangement of the song. The loiterer pauses and 
listens with delighted interest. His curiosity is ex- 
cited ; he would like to know who was " Nancy Bo- 
hannan,'' and why they must " shave her away," but 
he dares not interrupt the men's work by asking them 
questions. He strolls along the noble river, and 
finally turns back into the city, his curiosity aroused 
by the discordant sounds of musical instruments 
playing different tunes. A crowd of children and 
colored people, or, rather, two crowds, surround two 
rival organ-grinders stationed at opposite angles of 
the street-corner. One has a monkey dressed in a 
red coat and cocked hat. The boys predominate in 
his public, by no means a silent one, for each caper 
of poor Jack leads to loud and delighted comments. 
The other has no monkey, but he has pushed a slide 
from the front of his instrument, and lo ! here is a 
diminutive ball-room, with minute ladies and gentle- 
men whirling around in all the glory of velvet, satin, 
and tinsel. The little girls press close in front of this 
organ, and gaze in silent wonder on the little au- 
tomaton figures. The rival organ-grinders are Ital- 
ians ; their scowling looks reveal their fierce passions ; 
the musical struggle may end in a row ; but, no ; both 
abandon the field discomfited as the juvenile audi- 
ence rush from them to a still greater attraction than 
dancing monkeys and revolving puppets. The or- 
chestra-man is coming 1 He comes, a whole orchestra 
in himself, as his lips run over reeds of the Pandean 
pipes he has thrust in his vest bosom ; the motions of 
his head set the Chinese bells a-ringing which are 
affixed to his crown in lieu of a hat ; the cymbals 
attached to his elbows clash in time ; his hands wield 
the drumsticks with lightning rapidity, and yet find 
time to strike the triangle hanging over the drum in 
front of him. He marches on proudly, although not 
an elegant figure, followed by the crowd and by the 
envious gaze of an Irish piper, who has stopped, his 
bag under his arm, seeing the futility of competing 
with such a rival. 

The children follow, oblivious of home and of Jtime 
and distance, and by and by there will be anxious 
faces looking down the street, mothers will run dis- 
tractedly to and fro, and finally another Philadelphia 
institution, the town-crier and bell-man, will have to 
be brought upon the stage. He moves on with solemn 
step, ringing his bell vigorously, stops at a corner, 



where the people crowd round him to listen to his 
proclamation, and in a loud voice he describes the 
lost child. He recites the name, age, general appear- 
ance, and style of dress of the missing one, together 
with the name and residence of the parents. His 
voice is doleful in its tone, — it may be sympathy for 
the sorrowing mother, yet in the same tone did he 
not announce the loss of Dick Brown's horse and 
Widow Flanagan's cow ? Withal, he was a useful, 
kind old body, this same bell-man. He has disap- 
peared with his crony, the old city watchman, who 
used to walk so cautiously along the dimly-lighted 
streets, carrying his flambeau and his rattle. Poor old 
Charley, as the boys used to call him, who nearly 
teased the life out of him. He was lamp-lighter as 
well as watchman, walked his beat at regular inter- 
vals, and called out the hour, the state of the weather, 
and any startling event, such as a fire or a riot. The 
fact is on record that the old watchman did once 
startle the whole community from their slumbers, 
and brought them out, delirious with joy, in the 
streets. It was the night he cried, " O-h ! p-a-s-t three 
o'clock, and Cornwallis is taken I" His piping voice 
rang like a clarion on that occasion. 

The old watchman gone, his " box" ceased to or- 
nament the street corner. Those watch-boxes were 
queer little shelter-places, where the guardians of the 
night could rest their wearied limbs in the intervals 
between their rounds and find protection from the 
pelting storm. They were square or hexagonal in 
shape, with a diameter of about four feet, and a 
height of seven or eight feet. The roof, running to 
a point, was surmounted by a lamp or lantern. A 
bench for the watchman to sit on, a few hooks on 
which to hang his overcoat and his citizen's clothes, 
a shelf in a corner where to stow away his oil-can 
and torch, used in lighting the street lamps, com- 
posed all the furniture of the watch-box. The lamp- 
lighter's torch, constructed of iron or tin, had a reser- 
voir or fountain for the oil at the base, and a large 
wick, well fed with oil, so as to resist the wind. 
Having lighted this the watchman would start on his 
lamp-lighting errand ; but sometimes it happened that 
a sudden gust of wind would put out his smoky torch. 
Then he was indeed in a quandary, for he must find 
some sheltered place where he could strike a light 
with his tinder-box and brimstone matches and 
ignite the blackened wick. With all these difficul- 
ties in his way his work, however, was well and 
faithfully done. In time the watch-box was made 
of circular form, and its dimensions enlarged. A 
diminutive stove then added to the comforts of the 
watchman, but invited sleep in forbidden hours. 
Woe to the poor " Charley" if he was discovered 
asleep by the dissipated young fellows roving about 
the streets at late hours! They would fasten the 
door from the outside, and call out " Watch ! watch !" 
in tones of great distress, while the imprisoned officer 
made vain efforts to get out. The watch-boxes were 

made of wood, light, and, simply resting on the pave- 
ment, were easily moved. The wicked fellows would 
sometimes pass a stout rope round the frail structure 
and drag it to another spot, or suddenly turn it 
over, to the great terror and, perhaps, bodily harm 
of the drowsy occupant. 

Among the peculiar noises heard in the neighbor- 
hood of the markets, one that always attracted a 
crowd was the flourish of trumpet announcing the 
proximity of show-beef. In the early part of the 
century it was the practice to drive cattle particularly 
fat to the slaughter-house through the streets of the 
city decorated with flowers and garlands, and with 
gay ribbons tied to their horns, in order to attract to 
the sale of the meat, which was to take place on the 
succeeding day. In Birch's view of the new market 
is a representation of one of these little processions, 
which is accompanied by a fiddler who seems to be 
playing right merrily. The sound of the trumpet 
became so closely associated with show-cattle in the 
minds of the people, that long afterward, at the con- 
cert or oratorio, a trumpet solo always provoked mer- 
riment in the audience and the suppressed exclama- 
tion, " Show beef." 

A sight of no little interest and wonder to the 
stranger in Philadelphia, in the early part of the 
century, was the North American Indian, no longer 
in all the glory of war-paint, scalping-knife, and 
feathers, yet retaining enough of the characteristics 
of the noble sons of the forest to be an object of 
study for the European traveler. These Indian visitors 
were mostly descendants of the Lenni Lenape ; they 
came in small parties with their squaws and papooses. 
The costume of the men presented a curious combina- 
tion of the garments of the civilized world with those 
fashions dear to the savage. From the former they 
borrowed the fur hat, and the rough coat or overcoat 
as a good substitute for the blanket, but they disdained 
trowsers and shoes ; their feet were protected by the 
convenient moccasin. There was one artifice of the 
toilet which these untutored sons of nature rarely 
neglected, however : they painted, not in imitation of 
our fair belles, with rouge and pearl-white, but with 
coarse ochres which gave a hideous expression to their 
faces. Neither did they fail to wear the large ear-rings 
of copper or silver in true Indian style. Their great 
object did not seem to be so much a desire to study the 
manners and customs of the whites, as to " turn up a 
penny" whenever they saw a chance. Their faithful 
bows and arrows, which they always carried, proved 
to be excellent implements of trade ; they displayed 
their skill by shooting for pennies, " fips," " levvies," 
and " quarters," at the choice of the spectators. The 
piece being put up at some convenient place — a crack 
in the wall or post, a projecting stone, or even simply 
dropped upon the pavement at a suitable distance — 
sometimes as much as fifty yards, the " brave" would 
be invited to shoot. He seldom missed the mark ; 
having struck the piece, he pocketed it without the 



least signs of emotion, except perhaps a subdued 
grunt, and went on his way, unless invited to try his 
luck on another piece, which happened not unfre- 
quently, for people never tired admiring his extra- 
ordinary skill with this primitive weapon. 

The women's appearance was not so interesting as 
that of the men ; their common calico dresses and dirty 
blankets did not enhance their charms. They went 
bare-headed and bare-footed, and, veritable beasts of 
burden, besides the papoose safely fixed on their 
backs, they carried bundles of moccasins and pouches 
decorated with bead-work and bark baskets, cunningly 
worked and painted. These they offered for sale at 
the street corners, while their noble lords shot their 
arrows or idled about the streets. The dark-skinned 
papooses, with their bead-like eyes and stolid little 
countenances, — for it is seldom one hears an Indian 
child cry, — were objects of general interest. These 
Indian women did not seem unhappy, but apathetic. 
The woman's rights question had never been discussed 
among them; it had not been agitated among the 
whites then, and if it had it would have made no dif- 
ference with these dusky representatives of female 
loveliness. The Indians' code of gallantry authorized 
the men to respect their own dignity and leave all the 
hard work to their wives; they accepted it without 
murmur. Civilized white husbands have been known 
to entertain these Indian notions, as many a hard- 
worked wife may testify. Occasionally there were 
exhibitions by the Indians of the semi-theatrical dis- 
play of their war dances and other customs. These 
were held at public gardens in summer and at taverns 
in winter. In 1825, Warwick, who kept a tavern at 
Seventh' and South Streets, and who had a large ex- 
hibition-room in the second story, used for meetings, 
free-and-easys, etc., had a party of six Western sons 
of the forest, who went through performances illus- 
trating their modes of life, for the edification of pale- 
faced visitors, who paid their price for admission. 
But these hired performers were far less interesting 
than the free visitors who used to shoot for pen- 

Every city has its harmless lunatic, enjoying the 
freedom of the streets and contributing to the amuse- 
ment of the thoughtless. The madman is sacred in 
the eyes of the Mussulman and of most of the savage 
tribes: it is only the civilized Christian who laughs at 
his incoherentdiscourse or meaningless actions. Then 
there is the oddity, the eccentric individual, who will 
not do as others do. Philadelphia has had her crazy 
street characters, her oddities and eccentricities. She 
probably has them now, in greater number than 
ever, but what with the immense population of the 
city, and the busy, hurried ways of the age, they pass 
unnoticed, except by a few, until some foolish act of 
theirs brings them before a court or in the newspaper 
reports. Their modern name is the " crank," and 
they are not half so interesting a study as were their 

The spectre-looking elderly spinster, Leah, men- 
tioned by Watson, who remembered having seen her, 
could not have excited merriment, for her oddities were 
of a ghostly turn. One of her favorite occupations was 
passing the night in the Potter's Field, where, wrapped 
in a long blanket, she stalked among the graves for 
theavowed purpose of" frightening away the doctors." 
Leah was a member of the society of Friends, and a 
very simple, kind-hearted creature. There must have 
been some incident in her life connected with resur- 
rectionists, since her great anxiety was to protect the 
graves from desecration. 

Nor was there anything laughable in the madness 
of Honorah Power, commonly known as " Crazy 
Norah." What was her history? The child of a 
well-to-do Irish farmer, she was left at his death with 
a modest but sufficient provision. She lived with a 
married sister, and put her money in the hands of her 
brother-in-law ; he squandered it as well as his wife's 
portion. Norah came to America and hired herself 
out in Philadelphia as a servant. She was modest, 
well-behaved, and a pious Roman Catholic. She at- 
tended St. Mary's Church regularly. During the 
Hogan riot the church was desecrated. The effect of 
this painful scene on the girl's mind was disastrous ; she 
became insane. After a time, her excitement being 
allayed, she recovered in part her reason, and was able 
to earn her bread by doing errands, collecting bad 
debts, etc. But she was too mad to fill any place re- 
quiring her constant attention. She walked a_great 
deal, and had a pleasant word for every one she met. 
She was fond of children, though the boys tormented 
her sometimes; "she would take them by the hand," 
says Mr. Watson, " induce them to say the Lord's 
Prayer and the Catholic Creed, and then reward them 
with some trifle from the large bag she invariably car- 
ried, such as a button, a piece of colored china, old 
ribbon, or some similar thing of little or no value." 
She is described as a tall woman "with sharp, firm 
features, a clear black eye, and iron-gray hair, and 
whose quick step, together with her peculiar dress, 
gave her a masculine appearance." 

"Lang Syne," of Germantown (Benjamin J. Lee- 
dom) says, — 

"Sometimes, while Bitting in silence in Pine Street Meeting, I have 
seen the door open and Norah would stalk in, anil, advamiiiK up the 
middle aisle, would stop, and standi ng erect as a etatue, would make the 
sign of the cross and commence counting her heads. As she was well 
known by all tin- meeting, no one interfered with her, and she was per- 
mitted to pursue herway unmolested. Afterhaving goue through with 
her religious performances she would either stalk out or take a seat on 
the men's side and remain until the meeting closed, everybody kindly 
greeting her as the} left. . . . Tall and slender in person, graceful in 
figure, her head surumunted by a man's hat, high men's boots reaching 
to her knees, with a leather girdle around her waist, and a large black 
cross suspended from her neck; she would frequently stop me on the 
street and make the sign of the ci-osb on my forehead." 

But who could have helped from smiling on meet- 
ing Michael Weaders, or rather "Me Mo Michael 
Hans Muckle Weaders," as he styled himself? 
"Lang Syue" describes this fantastic beinc- who 



was a servant in the Pancoast family. When he was 
sent on an errand — 

" he could scarcely proceed a square in an hour, being continually sur- 
rounded by all sorts of people, some viewing him and listening to him, 
and some asking him over again the same question which he had been 
asked a thousand times. Whether the question repeated came from the 
child or the man, he was sure to answer them every one with an un- 
broken smile extending from cheek to cheek (sans teeth), with unwearied 
patience, idiotic simplicity, and an affectionate tone of voice. To aston- 
ish them he sometimes changed his usual amiable appearance and ex- 
pression of countenance to a hideous squint, his two eyes gazing at each 
other, and his long tongue hissing like aserpent from between his bone- 
less gums, causing the juvenile spectator to shrink away from the hor- 
rid sight, which was but for a moment. Then, resuming his usual 
benevolent, smiling look, he would say, 'That's the way to frighten the 
Indians, so it is I' He claimed as sweethearts all the fashionable unmar- 
ried belles in the city. He had ' fifty hundred, twenty hundred and 
sixteen 1 of them ; and when any one of them married he was sure to go 
the next day after the wedding to claim his forfeit, — alwayB cheerfully 
given to him, — which was a half-crown and a glasB of punch from the 
lady's own hands, ' which,' said he, ' was all the same as though I 
married her myself.' " 

Michael Weaders died Feb. 23, 1808, aged eighty- 
three years. The United States Gazette records this 
obituary notice : 

"He was a native of Germany, and a steady inhabitant of, or near, 
this city for upward of seventy years. It maybe truly said that he lived 
a harmless and an inoffensive life. He had not the strongest mental 
capacity, and although he experienced more of the smiles and atten- 
tions of the fair sex than usually fall to the share of an individual, he 
preferred a life of celibacy as most conducive with his happiness. He 
was a zealous patriot at the commencement of our Revolution, but be- 
ing terrified at the approach of the British army, he receded from his 
patriotism and made his peace with Gen. Howe; and on being asked 
what induced him to relinquish his former principles, he answered, * It 
is best to he friendly.' Honest Michael was well known to many of the 
inhabitants of Philadelphia; though they will no more bear him utter 
his friendly salutation, ' I see thee first!' he will still retain a place in 
their remembrance." 

Another curious character was Henry Noble, a col- 
ored man, who went by the nickname of " Whistling 
Harry.'' Whether he was totally insane does not ap- 
pear, but his peculiarity was a strange one. " Lang 
Syne," of Germantown, informs us that — 

" he always carried a stick, with a tin kettle on hiB arm. For a cent 
he would spell 'Constantinople' and give a prolonged whistle that could 
be beard for a square. When the cent was produced he would com- 
mence, ' C-o-n, that's Con, s t-a-n, that'B stan, t-i, that's ti, n-o-b-l-e (being 
his name), that's Constantinople,' giving a smack with his lips like the 
report of a pistol between each syllable, and winding up with bis pro- 
longed whistle, his eyes nearly starting from their sockets. He was 
generally surroundpd by a crowd of boys from the stores along Mnrket 
Street, between Fourth and Fifth. Cent after cent was produced, and 
oft times he was called upon to repeat his performances." 

" The Man with the Whip'' was an eccentric fellow, 
well known at that time. He had manufactured an 
enormous whip made from hickory withes with a long 
handle. It was his delight to swing this immense 
whip, which extended half-way across the street, and 
to crack it, to the great annoyance and possible dan- 
ger of passers-by. What was his particular object in 
indulging in this amusement no one knew, but the 
city fathers put a stop to it. He was declared a nui- 
sance, and he and his whip disappeared from the 
scene. " Lang Syne," of Germantown, gives this 
recollection of his performance : 

"I saw him once standing in the middle of the crossing betwixt the 
Third and Fourth Streets markets, swinging the whip over his head in 
circles and until it had sufficient impetus, when he let it out with a 
report like the explosion of a rifle." 

There was another well-known character, — not a 
madman, nor yet an idiot, but, on the contrary, a man 
of uncommon intelligence, who was often exposed to 
the jeers of the thoughtless populace because nature 
had denied him the fair proportions usually allotted 
to man. Richard Folwell, alias "Dicky" Folwell, 
was a dwarf and a cripple. He was witty and eccen- 
tric, as is commonly the case with dwarfs and hunch- 
backs, and, thanks to his tormentors, often mingled 
in some comic adventure. One day as he was cross- 
ing Walnut Street, a pig, scared probably by some 
wag, ran between the legs of the little man, who found 
himself suddenly astride the animal's back, and was 
carried some distance up the street before he could 
alight. The wags circulated the story that he had 
been seen riding a pig through Second Street from 
Walnut Street past the CofTee-House to Chestnut 
Street, and poor " Dicky" knew peace no more. This 
deformed creature was a printer, and managed with 
considerable ability a paper called The Spirit of the 
Age. Free in its comments on men and measures, 
Folwell's paper was no more personal than the jour- 
nals of the time. That Folwell was familiar with 
other subjects than those which form the especial 
province of the journalist, that he was a thinker in- 
terested in the well-being of his fellow-man, whom 
he so little resembled, is shown by the plan he wrote 
and published for the extinction of yellow fever by the 
use of ice-cold air and refrigeration, " thus anticipating 
by more than half a century," says a writer, " the 
proposition of Gamgee, to whom Congress lately 
voted a half-million of dollars to experiment upon 
that theory." 1 

In the early part of the century some very odd per- 
formances could be seen on the streets on Christmas- 
eve and during Christmas week. Parties of "Mum- 
mers" went round from house to house, reciting 
rhymes explanatory of their fantastical disguises, and 
demanding "dole." This custom, which came from 
England, prevailed in the early part of the present 
century, and is well remembered by the old inhabitants 
of Philadelphia. The " Mummers" were but a popu- 
lar reminiscence of the English saturnalia celebrated 
of old under the direction of "the Lord of Misrule," 
—a fantastic personage, known to the Scotch as the 
" Abbot of Unreason" and to the French as " Le 
Pape des Fous." The English " Lord of Misrule," or 
Christmas prince, was originally created for the pur- 
pose of regulating " misrule" and keeping it within 
bounds wherever the king resided ; but the institu- 
tion became popular, and every town or parish had 
its manager of Christmas festivities, invested with 
plenary power. None delighted more in these whim- 
sical exhibitions than the students in the inns of 

1 Wostcott's "History of Philadelphia." 



court. Gradually this moderator of fun took such 
delight in the antics of his subjects that he deserved 
the title of " a grand captaine of mischiefe," given 
him by the Puritan Stubbes in the reign of Eliza- 
beth. The " dole" was a tax levied upon the citizens 
by the temporary ruler, and was generally paid with 
promptness, to avoid further annoyance. It was not 
always so, however. Disraeli, the elder, quotes from 
a manuscript letter of the learned Mede to Sir Martin 
Stuteville, an account of what seems to have been the 
last memorable act of a " Lord of Misrule'' of the 
inns of court, and which occurred in 1627, when the 
Christmas game became serious. "The Templars 
chose one Mr. Palmer their ' Lord of Misrule,' who, 
on Twelfth-eve, late in the night, sent out to gather 
up his rents at five shillings a house, in Ram Alley 
and Fleet Street. At every door they came they 
winded the Temple horn, and if at the second blast 
or summons they within opened not the door, then 
the ' Lord of Misrule' cried out, ' Give fire, gunner.' 
His gunner was a robustious Vulcan, and the gun or 
petard itself was a huge overgrown smith's hammer." 
The letter goes on to relate how complaint was made 
to the lord mayor, who summoned the " Lord of Mis- 
rule" to appear before him, but the latter refused. 
They finally agreed to meet half-way. The inter- 
view ended in a general row, the " Mummers" were 
worsted, and the " Lord of Misrule" was captured by 
his lordship the mayor himself, who, taking him by 
the shoulder, " led him to the compter, and thrust 
him in at the prison-gate with a kind of indignation ; 
and so, notwithstanding his hurts, he was forced to 
lie among the common prisoners for two nights." 
The prisoners obtained their liberty, at the solicita- 
tion of the attorney-general, upon condition they 
should repay the gathered rents, and " do reparations 
upon broken doors." The attorney-general fetched 
them in his own coach, and carried them to the court, 
where the king himself reconciled my lord mayor and 
them together with joining all hands." Notwithstand- 
ing this mark of royal favor, the " Lord of Misrule" 
and his mock court lost much of their importance 
after this. They disappeared finally after the death 
of Charles I. But the spirit of tomfoolery which had 
inspired them continued to display itself feebly in 
annual mummeries, the performers reciting some 
rhymed speeches in connection with a semblance 
of a plot, — crude attempts to imitate the celebrated 
" masques" contrived for the amusement of royalty, 
without the wit and splendor of their models. 

One of the oldest of these second-rate masques, 
" St. George and the Dragon," had crossed the ocean, 
but the Philadelphia " Mummers" took many liber- 
ties with the dramatis persona, and modified some of 
their speeches to suit the time and the public. Thus 
St. George became George Washington, and " Cooney 
Cracker," an American creation, took the place of 
"Little Devil Doubt." Beelzebub's speech suffered 
but trifling changes. It was originally, — 

" In comes I, old Father Beelzebub, 
And on my shoulder I carry a club, 
And in my hand I carry a can — 
Don't you think I'm a jolly old man? 
As jolly as I am, Christmas .cornea but once a year; 
Now's the time for roast beef, plum-pudding, mince-pie, 
and strong beer." 

In the Philadelphia version, according to an old 
citizen's recollection, it began as follows : 

" Here comes I, oldgBeelzebub, 
On my shoulder I carry a club, 
In my band a dripping-pan — 
Don't you think I'm a jolly old man ?". 

Another correspondent substitutes " a frying-pan" 
for " a dripping-pan." 

Little Devil Doubt's speech was this: 

" In comes I, Little Devil Doubt; 
If you don't give me money I'll sweep you out ! 
Money I want, and money I crave ; 
If you don't give me money I'll sweep you to your grave 1" 

But the American Cooney Cracker spoke differently. 
One version of his speech is this : 

" Here comes I, old Cooney Cracker I 
I swear to God my wife chews terbacker I 
A pipe is good ; cigars are bptter ; 
When I get married I'll send you a letter." 

Another version differs in the three last lines: 

*' I want some money to buy tobacco ; 
Tobacco's good ; cigars are better; 
Give me some money, or I'll marry your daughter." 

Of the speech attributed to George Washington, 
only the first two lines are remembered. They were : 

" Here am I, great Washington I 
On my shoulders I carry a gun." 

The patriotism of the American mummers had re- 
versed the position of the two leading characters, and 
St. George, the patron saint and mythical hero of 
England, defending her against the dragon, became 
George Washington, the destroyer of that dragon — 
British rule in America. 

A correspondent, speaking of these representations, 
said, — 

" It was considered the proper thing in those days to give the leading 
mummer a few pence as dole, which, in the language of the present time, 
they would ' pool,' and boy cakes and beer. It was also regarded as the 
right thing to do to invite them into the bouse, and regale them with 
mulled cider, or small beer, and home-made cakes. It was considered 
a great breach of decorum, or of etiquette, to address or otherwise rec- 
ognize the mummerB by any other than the name of the character he 
was assuming. I remember a little girl who, with all the curiosity of 
her sex, had discovered a neighbor's boy in the party ; and with childish 
impetuosity she broke ont with, ' Ob, I know thee, Isaac Simmons ! 
Thee is not George Washington I' etc. This departure from the pro- 
prieties of the occasion was made the subject of comment on many re- 
turning holidays. Such were the simple and gentle ways of those 
whose footsteps we are steadily and surely following, and still toward 
the Betting sun." 

One of these bands of mummers, which was re- 
cruited in the neighborhood of Sixth and South 
Streets, was led by Eph Horn, afterward noted as an 
Ethiopian minstrel singer. Horn brought out Beel- 
zebub and Cooney Cracker, also the Prince of Egypt, 
who announced, — 



" Here I am, tbe Prince of Egypt ! 
I am Pharaoh's only son." 

These " mummeries," however, did not find favor 
with all the people. In fact, Christmas itself was not 
generally observed. The Quakers did not incline to 
the commemoration of holidays, nor did the more 
rigid of the Protestant sects, especially the Presby- 
terians. To the Episcopalians, the Catholics, and the 
Germans of the Reformed <jf Lutheran Churches, it 
was a day for family reunions and social gathering as 
well as a religious festival. The Germans introduced 
the Christmas-tree, with toys, trinkets, figures of 
angels, and numerous little lighted tapers, — a pretty 
custom with which many American families have 
since become familiar. In the homes of Americans 
of English descent the traditional row of children's 
stockings could be seen on Christmas-eve hanging in 
the chimney-corner, and the little ones, tripping up 
to them in their bare feet on Christmas-day, were sure 
to find them well filled with "' goodies" and pretty 
things. The Christmas-dinner, so often described, 
with its three great features of turkey, plum-pudding, 
and mince pie, and its company of merry faces, assem- 
bled in friendship and kindly feelings, was an old Eng- 
lish custom, too good to be rejected by the Americans. 

As a closing scene to the Christmas festivities, there 
was an ancient custom, of German origin, it is said, 
which was the cause of some useless legislation. 
This was the "shooting away the old year," — firing 
guns, pistols, and fire-crackers at midnight on the 
31st of December. As early as the year 1774 an act 
was passed prohibiting these noisy demonstrations, as 
greatly disturbing the public peace, under penalty of 
a fine, and in after-years the mayor of the city fre- 
quently made proclamation calling attention to this 
act; but all these prohibitory measures were disre- 
garded by many, and the new year continued to be 
ushered in by the discharge of fire-arms and pyro- 
technic displays. 

There was another festival, celebrated only by a 
certain class of the population, viz., the Irish Cath- 
olics, which often brought trouble and ended in a 
regular riot. This was the celebration of St. Patrick's 
day. Early in the morning the Irish pipers and 
drummers went around playing their national airs, 
and every Irishman, woman, and child displayed the 
cherished shamrock. The Hibernia Greens paraded, 
and the procession after marching down Chestnut 
Street would pass through such portions of the city 
where their countrymen mostly resided. The Protest- 
ant Orangemen would often make a counter demonstra- 
tion, and if the two parties met a fight always followed. 
A contrivance calculated to rouse the ire of the Irish 
Catholics was the " stuffed Paddy," an effigy made of 
old clothes and straw, with a string of potatoes hanging 
to its neck, a pipe in its mouth, or where its mouth 
should have been, and holding a bottle in one hand 
and a glass in the other. This scarecrow figure was 
taken to some convenient place in the Irish quarters, 

before daylight on St. Patrick's day, and hung by the 
neck to some awning-post or to a tree. Woe to the 
perpetrators of this joke if they were caught in the 
act; they seldom escaped without broken bones. 
Foolish young Americans sometimes thought it good 
fun to annoy the "Paddies" by getting up these 
figures. This continual antagonism engendered much 
bad feeling, and a serious riot that happened in after- 
years led to a strong expression of public opinion 
against these celebrations, and caused their abandon- 

For some years after the Revolution, in fact, as late 
as the war of 1812, the old English festival of May- 
day was kept by certain classes of people. The 
Maying parties, composed principally of young men 
and young women, left the city in the early morning 
to spend the day in the fields and woods. They had 
a feast and dances on the grass, for they went with 
well-provided hampers, and the fiddler was an indis- 
pensable guest. After a day's enjoyment in the cool 
shade and sweet-scented fields, they returned laden 
with fragrant spoils, tired but happy. Lovers fully 
appreciated the innocent pleasures of Maying; hands 
met in breaking the lilac bough ; cheeks met in close 
contact as two young heads bent over the same tiny 
field-flower, and the gay carol of the feathered song- 
ster overhead was a fit accompaniment to the softly- 
whispered vows of youthful love. 

Although spring flowers are not suggestive of fish, 
May-day was the special holiday of the fish huck- 
sters and shad fishermen. They met in the Water 
Street taverns, where they indulged in much jollifi- 
cation and dancing. May-poles were erected in front 
of these taverns or upon the Market Street hill, 
around which there was also much dancing. These 
good people went in for a day of fun and frolic, 
and they made the most of it while it lasted. For 
many years after the May-pole ceased to be seen, and 
Maying-parties went out of fashion, the fishermen 
and fish women kept up their May-day dancing and 
feasting in the taverns. 

Two other anniversaries, dear to every American 
heart, were celebrated with fitting enthusiasm. 
Washington's birthday was an occasion for proces- 
sions, orations, and banquets, and it should have 
been a national holiday, in which all the people 
would have participated, were it not that the societies 
most prominently engaged in the celebration being 
entirely composed of Federalists, the Democrats came 
to consider the 22d of February as a political anni- 
versary, and they abstained from participating in 
ceremonies directed by their political opponents. 
This abstention extended even to the volunteer com- 
panies not in sympathy with the Federalists. 

But the glorious Fourth of July was an occasion 
on which party feeling was ignored. The enthusiasm 
of the people manifested itself individually by the 
firing of guns, rockets, and fire-crackers, without 
prejudice to the organized programme, embracing 




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generally a military procession, patriotic orations, 
banquets, and displays of fire-works. We burn less 
powder now, and we object to noisy demonstrations. 
It may be all for the best, but there is danger, as the 
celebration becomes more restricted every year, that 
the anniversary of our national independence will 
gradually and quietly sink into oblivion. It would 
be well that the rising generation should be taught to 
reverence the day, and to kindle in their young hearts 
a spark of the spirit of '76, which made heroes of 
their fathers, — the spirit of endurance, of self-sacrifice 
and love of country, without which all the boasted 
progress of the age cannot save a people from decline. 

An occasion for considerable excitement and some 
lively scenes, especially in the " old city," was "elec- 
tion-day." The general election for the city was held 
at the State-House, the windows of the east and west 
rooms, first floor, upon Chestnut Street and upon the 
State-House yard being appropriated to that pur- 
pose. For the Northern Liberties the elections were 
held at the Commissioners' Hall, which, in the early 
part of the period, was at the south end of the mar- 
ket at Second and Coates Streets. It was afterward 
transferred to the quarters originally belonging to 
the British barracks, on Third Street, above Tam- 
many (or Buttonwood), which was thenceforth called 
Commissioners' Hall. The Southwark elections were 
held at the Commissioners' Hall, on the east side of 
Second Street, north of Christian, and those of Spring 
Garden at the hall on the northeast corner of Eighth 
and Buttonwood Streets. Each of these, places was 
the focus of interest aud activity for its district. 

Platforms of wood were erected in front of each 
polling-window, so that the voter might be elevated 
to a level with the election officers within. Where 
the population of the ward was large and the election 
an important one, there was often great struggling 
among the voters to reach the polling-window, espe- 
cially during the last hours of voting; pushing and 
jostling led to angry recriminations and finally to 
blows, and the strife would soon spread out among the 
mass of the people in the street, during which ex- 
citement fists, canes, umbrellas, or whatever instru- 
ments of offense were handy were used, while hats, 
coats, and apparel were torn to rags ; and when the 
mUee was over, the combatants, bloody, with black- 
ened eyes and torn and disheveled hair, would man- 
age to get out of the throng and sneak homeward. 
Nothing more serious than bruises were the results of 
these encounters. The carrying of deadly weapons, 
such as the pistol, the blackjack, and the knife, was 

There was no recorded instance of any person 
having been killed in an election fight in Philadel- 
phia between- 1800 and 1825, nor for many years 

But if political questions could be settled by the 
ballot with an occasional accompaniment of fisticuffs, 
there was a domestic problem, hard to solve then, as 

it still is now, and housekeepers discussed to no avail 
the "servant question." It seems that they were 
even worse off at that time, judging from the char- 
acter of the servants described by Samuel Breck in 
his " Recollections :" 

" This is a crying evil which most families feel very sensibly at pres- 
ent. The vast quantity of uncultivated lands, the general prosperity, 
and the unexampled increase of our city unite to scatter the menial 
citizens, aud to make It extremely difficult to be suited with decent ser- 
vants. I have, in the course of ten or twelve years' housekeeping, had 
a strange variety, among which I have heard of one being bung, of one 
that hung himself, of one who died druuk in the road, and of another 
that swallowed poison in a fit of intoxication. Those that form my 
present household have lived with me from one to three years, and are 
pretty tolerable." 

Several years later Mr.' Breck noted in his diary 
the following instance of the extravagance of servant- 

"Mrs. Breck discharged a servant-girl to-day for fibbing and mischief- 
making. She has been nearly three years in my family, and has con- 
trived artfully enough to quarrel with, and occasion the dismissal of, 
four or five of her fellow-servants. But what makes me take any no- 
tice of this woman is that she, like many others who haveBerved in my 
house these last twenty-five years, came to us almost naked, and must 
have seen hard times without profiting by the lessons of adversity ; for 
no sooner was she entitled to receive a few dollars than she squandered 
it on finery, instead of Inlying necessaries. In this manner she has gone 
on until this day, bedecking herself in merino shawls, chip bonnets, 
etc., without laying up fifteen dollars, although she has received from 
one dollar aud fifty cents to one dollar and twenty-five cents per week. 
Mrs. Breck informs me that when she took up about eleven dollars 
which were due to her in June last, she told her that she was bare of 
necessary clothing; yet, with this modicum for her all, she went to 
town and bought some satin to trim her bonnet in the style of that of a 
young lady who was on a visit to me, a gilt clasp that, must have cost 
three dollars, a parasol that came to perhaps four dollars more, a set of 
tortoise-shell combs, and some other trash; so that she brought home of 
real necessaries nothing but one poor shift] If this girl gets out of 
place, or becomes sick, she will not have enough to support herself one 
mouth. This is a faithful picture of the wasteful and disgraceful ex- 
travagance of nine-tenths of the servants, male and female, for the last 
thirty years." 

Many housekeepers of the present time might, 
without doubt, indorse Mr. Breck's remarks. The 
servant girls' wages, though much higher than at the 
period treated of, are but too often foolishly spent in 
useless finery. There are two reasons why this prac- 
tice is so common. In the first place, servants here 
do not form a class as in Europe ; the girl who hires 
her time and services looks upon the arrangement as 
temporary ; unless she is very ugly (and what woman 
ever believed herself ugly ?) she expects to marry and 
have a home of her own. Dress, then, becomes an 
important question with her. She must look her best 
if she wishes to catch a husband. Another reason 
for a servant's extravagance is, too often, the example 
set by the mistress of the house. If she be extrava- 
gant and wasteful she cannot expect her servant to be 
modest and prudent, for a servant is but human, after 
all ; and to resist temptation, with the daily recur- 
rence of examples of folly iu her superiors, would 
require heroism such as cannot be justly expected of 

Fanny Wright, in the " Englishwoman in America," 
discusses the servant question, and says, in conclu- 
sion, — 



" The native American, when he can he obtained, makes a valuable 
domestic. Household Bervice, as I have observed in a former letter, is 
not an employment that the citizens are fond of; but the very qualities 
which disincliue them from it make them the more trusty when engaged 
in it. The foreigner, however, must be careful not to rub their pride. 
No American will receive an insulting word. A common mode of re- 
senting an imperious order is to quit the house without waiting, or even 
asking, for a reckoning. The sensitiveness of the American pride is 
sometimes not a little curious and amusing." 

During the early part of the century many 
improvements and inventions tending to increase 
comfort were introduced. The bath-room arrange- 
ments were of the utmost simplicity. Wooden or 
marble tubs were used, to which hot and cold water 
had to be carried in pails.' A floating furnace was 
invented, which was to be placed in a bath-tub to 
heat the water. It was in the shape of a cylinder of 
copper, within which was to be placed a charcoal-fire. 
Two hollow arms, extending out like horns, were to 
reach above the surface of the water, so that while 
one furnished draught to the fuel the other would 
carry off the smoke and the gases. The inventor 
quaintly remarked in favor of the contrivance that, 
when properly operated, it would be " quite sufficient 
to render the water of the bath comfortable in about 
two hours." But he made no reference to the fact 
that in order to prevent the bather from being stifled 
by the gas from the burning charcoal it would be 
necessary to have the windows of the room in which 
the bath was placed hoisted, so that whatever in win- 
ter-time might be gained by this method of heating 
the bath would be lost by the chilling discomfort of 
a cold bath-room. 

The boiler or water-back connected with pipes was 
not invented until several years after the introduction 
of the Schuylkill water in the houses. Floating- 
baths were introduced in 1813. The applicability of 
gas for illumination had been shown at the Philadel- 
phia Museum, at the State-House, at Masonic Hall, 
and at the Chestnut Street Theatre. In 1816, Wil- 
liam Henry, who made the gas apparatus for use in 
the museum and theatre, placed pipes and set up an 
apparatus for manufacturing gas at his residence, No. 
200 Lombard Street, near Seventh. He was a copper- 
and tinsmith. Notwithstanding this ocular demon- 
stration, the Philadelphians remained indifferent, 
and stuck to their candles or to lamps in which 
they burned whale-oil. For grand illuminations 
they used wax candles. 

Edward Clark, of Philadelphia, obtained a patent 
for lamps April 27, 1814, and Asa Taylor for candle- 
lamps Oct. 9, 1819. 

The tinder-box, steel, and flint continued for a long 
time to be the only means of obtaining light. At 
last, in 1819, a new process was discovered. Silli- 
man's Journal, in 1819, describes this new wonder in 
the following manner : 

" We may say that while this method of obtaining 
fire was employed by lovers of curiosity, it was in a 
very small degree. There was too much trouble to 

be taken in the production of the flame to cause the 
invention to be brought into common use." 

This method was a match tipped with some chem- 
ical composition, which, on being thrust into a bottle 
containing another chemical, took fire. 

Ice creams were only made to order by the confec- 
tioners until the beginning of the century. Bosio, 
who opened his ice-cream house in 1800, had many 
imitators, and in a few years the use of frozen cream 
and custards and water-ices became general. 

The water-cooler was brought into use about 1810 
by Branch Green ; and Daniel George, in 1811, was 
the first to engage in the ice business as a regular 

In the summer of 1816 the United States _ Gazette 
noted the fact, " This summer, for the first time, ves- 
sels loaded with ice went to sea to obtain fish, and 
brought them in ice to the Philadelphia market." 

The refrigerator was invented by Thomas Moore, 
of Montgomery County, Md., first in such form as to 
facilitate the carriage of produce to market in better 
condition than had been possible under the old 
methods. The additional possibilities of the invention 
were thus suggested in 1802 : 

" This, however, is only one amongst many uses to which it may be 
applied; every family may be furnished with a vessel in their cellars, 
in which, by the daily use of a few pounds of ice, fresh meat, mi Ik, butter, 
liquors, or any kind of provisions, may be cooled and preserved as effec- 
tually aB in common winter weather. It would be very useful to butchers, 
who often lose considerable quantities of meat in summer. Fishermen 
might easily transport their fish a great distance without spoiling in any 
weather. Even our talile6 may be supplied with handsome vessels, not 
much exceeding the usual size, for containing certain kinriB of food and 
liquids, which will cool their contents effectually, without exposiug any 
ice to view." 

At that time the tomato, which is now to be seen 
on every table in the land, was unknown as an escu- 
lent to the Philadelphians generally. It was called 
the "love-apple," and cultivated as an ornamental 
plant. The merits of the luscious terrapin were not 
discovered for a long time. The first time that we 
find it spoken of is in an advertisement published in 
Poulson's Advertiser in 1814, by one John Bailly, 
who gave notice that he had arrived in the city 
with one hundred dozen of terrapin, and that he 
could be found at the Rising Sun Hotel, in Letitia 
Court. In Palmer's list of articles sold in the Phil- 
adelphia markets in 1818, he calls them " tara- 
pin's, or bay tortoises." The price was from one to 
two dollars per dozen. The negroes of Delaware, 
Maryland, and Virginia had eaten them for a long 
while before this time; but their masters seemed to 
be of the opinion that they were only fit to be the 
food of slaves. 

But we have passed the limits allotted to this 
chapter, and must stop. With the nineteenth century 
began an era of scientific progress which, in a few 
years, saw changes accomplished that could not have 
been dreamed of at any period of the momentous 
eighteenth century. We have thrown a curious re- 
trospective glance on the social life of that past age, 



and found much to wonder at ; what would have been 
the feelings of those dead actors in a great drama, 
had they had a vision of our railroads and telegraph, 
of the telephone and electric light ! We have made 
science our slave and conquered the latent forces of 
nature and made them contribute to our comfort; 
yet we have much to emulate in the lives of our pre- 
decessors : their virtues made them happy and made 
their country great. 



" While Quaker folks were Quakers still, some fifty years ago, 
When coats were ilrau, aod gowns were plain, and speech was staid 

aud slow, 
Before Dame Fashion dared suggest a single friz or curl." 

So sings R. A. Jackson, beginning the story of pretty 
Ruth and her unwelcome lover, Sylvanus Moore. 
Make " fifty" a hundred, and the introduction will 
serve the purpose of the history of amusements in 
Philadelphia. For we must begin with the "good 
old times," when the Quaker influence predominated 
in the provincial city, when every one's energies were 
directed mainly toward founding a home and ac- 
quiring "substance." In those times amusements 
were few and of the simplest kind. The founders of 
this prosperous community led an active, busy life, — 
withal a quiet one; they did not feel the want of ex- 
citing pleasures, which, moreover, were condemned 
by their religion, and religion governed every act of 
their life. The very word " amusement" was objec- 
tionable, as meaning something frivolous and worldly. 
They had but two resources against ennui, and they 
availed themselves of these. First, there was " going 
to meeting," which was not merely a duty but a positive 
mental enjoyment and a delightful rest for the body. 
Then, as man must have some kind of material en- 
joyment, the early Philadelphians sought naturally 
that which was suggested by the abundance of the 
land, the pleasures of the table, and big dinners be- 
came their principal recreation. To these two habits 
cultivated by our Quaker forefathers are due two char- 
acteristics of the people of Philadelphia, which have 
outlived the many changes brought about by time, — 
the religious, moral tone of society, and a general in- 
clination to good living, and its natural sequence, 
hospitality. Every traveler who has written about 
Philadelphia has noticed these facts, and Philadelphia 
" dinners" and " tea-parties" have furnished the theme 
of many pleasant remarks. If these strangers have 
found anything to criticise, it has been the lavish 
extravagance of their host or hostess, — a criticism 
which may be accepted as a compliment. The history 
of every community, of every country, shows that it 
bears for centuries, if not forever, the recognizable 

mark of its founders. Laws and institutions, manners 
and customs may change in time, but there is some- 
thing in the character of the people which survives 
all these changes, and reveals the influences, good or 
bad, which controlled the organization of the social 
body. The seal of the cavaliers in Virginia, of the 
Puritans in New England, of the Quakers in Penn- 
sylvania is just as easily traceable as that of the French 
in Louisiana and Canada, although the greater differ- 
ences of language and religion existed in those two 
colonies when they became the one English and the 
other American. 

Against riding, swimming, fishing, and skating, 
there would be no prohibition ; they were natural rec- 
reations which could be freely indulged in by all. In 
course of time there were fishing clubs and swimming 
clubs. As to skating, it became an art in which the 
Philadelphians acquired no little fame. Graydon, in 
his "Memoirs," says that "though the Philadel- 
phians have never reduced it [skating] to rules like 
the Londoners, nor connected it with their business 
like Dutchmen, I will yet hazard the opinion that 
they are the best and most elegant skaters in the 
world." And Graydon had seen "New England 
skaters, Old England skaters, and Holland skaters." 

In support of this judgment we will quote the fol- 
lowing anecdote of the painter West, as told by Mr. 
Dunlap, in his " History of Art :" " West was a 
skillful skater, and in America had formed an ac- 
quaintance on the ice with Col. (afterward too well 
known in the colonial war as General) Howe; this 
friendship had dissolved with the thaw, and was for- 
gotten, till one day the painter, having tied on his 
skates at the Serpentine, was astonishing the timid 
practitioners of London by the rapidity of his motions 
and the graceful figure which he cut. Some one cried, 
'West! West!' It was Col. Howe. 'I am glad to 
see you,' said he ; ' and not the less so that you come 
in good time to vindicate my praises of American 
skating.' He called to him Lord Spencer Hamilton 
and some of the Cavendishes, to whom he introduced 
West as one of the Philadelphia prodigies, and re- 
quested him to show them what was called 'the 
salute.' He performed his feat so much to their sat- 
isfaction that they went away spreading the praises 
of the American skater over London. Nor was the 
considerate Quaker insensible to the value of such 
commendations. He continued to frequent the Ser- 
pentine and to gratify large crowds by cutting the 
Philadelphia salute." The sequel was that many of 
the admirers of the skater became acquainted with 
the painter and sat to him for their portraits. 

Graydon names Gen. Cadwalader and Charles 
Massey, the biscuit-baker, as the two reputed best 
skaters of his day. William McKoy, in his " Lang 
Syne Reminiscences," mentions as being " decidedly 
superior to the rest for dexterity, power, and grace" 
William Tharpe, Dr. Foulke, Governor Mifflin, C. 
W. Peale, George Heyl, and " Joe" Claypoole; also a 



black skater who " outstripped the wind." Franklin 
Peale became as famous a skater as his father. Capt. 
James Page, of the State Fencibles, was also much 
admired. Dr. Joseph Parrish was equally expert, 
but being a Friend he did not indulge in " fancy 
touches." The list of these brilliant performers on 
the ice does not include any ladies' names. It is rea- 
sonable to believe that women at that time had not 
learned to skate, or at least that they thought it in- 
decorous to exhibit their native graces in public; but 
the girls, doubtless, had many a surreptitious slide 
with their young brothers on some retired pond or 
creek. As for the boys, they did as all boys do, — 
they practiced on every frozen gutter, slided, fell, 
began again, went home with torn clothes, scratched 
noses, and unaccountable bumps on their heads, to 
the great distress of their mothers and suspicion of 
pater familias, until some fine day they appeared on 
the ice in all the glory of a new pair of skates, and 
proudly out-skated their elders. But if the fair 
Philadelphians did not venture upon the glassy sur- 
face of the Delaware, they congregated on its shores 
to witness the sport, and their approving bright 
glances had not a little to do with the efforts of the 
skaters to outdo each other in the grace and skill of 
their performances. 

If skating remained an innocent amusement, riding 
led gradually and inevitably to horse-racing, at first 
a friendly trial of speed on an invitingly smooth road, 
then betting, the establishment of a race-course, and 
gambling unlimited. The Society of Friends did not 
approve of horse-races, but others did, and races 
were held at a very early period. Race Street got its 
name from being the street leading directly to the 
racing-ground. In 1726 the grand jury present " that 
since the city has become so very populous, the usual 
custom of horse-racing at fairs in the Sassafras Street 
is very dangerous to life," etc. Capt. Graydon, in 
his " Memoirs," says racing was a great passion of 
his young days. Watson notices the first public ad- 
vertisement of a race in 1761, " wherein is stated the 
terms of running the intended races'' at the Centre 
Race-Ground, to run three times around the course 
each heat." The grounds themselves at the same 
time were familiarly called " the Governor's woods.'' 
The races at the Centre Square were discontinued 
in 1775. 

Mr. Thomas Bradford, telling Mr. Watson of his 
recollections of the races, says " he was told that the 
earliest races were scrub- and pace-races, on the 
ground now used as Eace Street. But in his younger 
days they were ran in a circular form on a ground 
from Arch or Eace Street down to Spruce Street, 
and from Eighth Street of Delaware to Schuylkill 
Eiver, making thus two miles for a heat. About 
the same time they also ran straight races of one 
mile, from Centre Square to Schuylkill, out High 

It seems that, at that time, pacers were deemed the 

most genteel horses. The Philadelphians, true to 
their English ancestry, had a decided fondness for 
horseflesh, and gentlemen having fine animals were 
wont to try their speed on the public streets. The 
race was often a spontaneous one, resulting from 
two riders getting into a discussion about the rela- 
tive merits of their horses, but there were occa- 
sions when some day was fixed upon in advance 
for a trial, and the friends of the riders would as- 
semble at a certain point to see the sport. Racing on 
the streets prevailed long after the Revolution, and 
when Philadelphia had become quite a large city. 
This dangerous custom became such a nuisance that 
on the 22d of March, 1817, the Legislature passed an 
act prohibiting horse-racing on any of the public 
streets of Philadelphia. The penalty was a fine of 
fifty dollars and forfeiture of the horse. 

The citizens who were forbidden the unlawful pleas- 
ure of riding at break-neck speed through crowded 
streets could find ample compensation in taking 
drives or rides on one of the several fine roads lead- 
ing out of the city through a beautiful and picturesque 
country. Mease said, in 1810, " No city in the United 
States affords so many diversified rides in its imme- 
diate vicinity as Philadelphia." But then driving 
or riding leisurely is not accompanied by the excite- 
ment of racing. 

A regular race-course, very extensively patronized 
to all appearance, was in use near Germantown at 
quite an early period. Bulow, who visited Phila- 
delphia in the latter part of the last century, speaks, 
in his account of his travels, of having witnessed a 
race near Germantown, where he saw horses run a 
four-mile heat in eight minutes, a feat which, he says, 
the horses of Germany could not perform. 

Another race-course was situated upon the Hunt- 
ing Park estate, at the corner of Nicetown Lane and 
the old York road. It was known as Hart's race- 

That racing was, however, far from generally popu- 
lar is shown by the fact that " fifteen hundred me- 
chanics and twelve hundred manufacturers" signed 
an address to the grand jury, in June, 1802, in which 
they declared that the race-course was injurious to 
them, and went on to say, — 

"Tills English dissipation of horse-racing may be agreeable to a few 
idle landed gentlemen, who bestow more care in training their horses 
than in educating their children, and it may be amusing to British mer- 
cantile ageuts and a fow landed characters in Philadelphia ; but it is in 
the greatest degree iujnrions to the mechanical and manufacturing in- 
terest, and will tend to our ruin if the nuisance is not removed by your 
patriotic exertions." 

In September of the same year the " great mischiefs 
and vices" resulting from races held at a place be- 
tween Frankford and Bustleton were denounced in a 
communication to the Philadelphia Gazette. Again, 
in 1805, the evil consequences of races are exposed by 
a writer in the Daily Advertiser, who says, " The Ger- 
mantown races yesterday commenced, where I suppose 



intoxication, riot, lewdness, and distress may be seen 
in all their various shapes." 

Races continued to be held, however, for several 
years later, but this species of gambling could not 
meet with the approval of the Legislature, and on the 
17th of February, 1820, a law was passed which de- 
clared that " all racing, running, pacing, or trotting 
of horses, mares, or geldings, for money, goods, or 
chattels, or other valuable things, shall be, and hereby 
are declared to be, common nuisances and offenses 
against this State." The animal used in the race was 
liable to be forfeited and seized by the overseers of 
the poor. All wagers and bets on horse-races, and 
notes and other securities given on account of the 
same, were declared void. The act further made it 
an offense to make up a purse or plate to be run for, 
to print advertisements, handbills, etc., mentioning 
the time and place at which races were to be held. 
Races for money were broken up for a time, but as 
racing to merely test the speed of the horses was not 
prohibited, a great deal of private betting was carried 
on, and the law was thus evaded, though apparently 

Before the Revolution such barbarous amusements 
as cock-fighting, bull-baiting, and bear-baiting were 
frequently indulged in, especially cock-fighting, in 
which men of the highest respectability found pleas- 
ure. Watson, in his " Annals," quotes from a letter 
of Dr. William Shippen to Dr. Gardiner, in 1735, 
announcing that he sent his friend " a young game- 
cock to be depended upon," and giving as a reason 
for not sending an old cock that '' our young cockers 
have contrived to kill and steal all I had." The 
venerable annalist also states that Timothy Mat- 
lack had once "a great passion'' for cock-fighting, 
which caused the wags to transform the initials 
T. G., with which he sometimes signed his political 
articles, into Tim Gaff, by which nickname he was 
afterward designated. Bull-baiting and bear-baiting 
were patronized principally by a lower class of people ; 
they were usually gotten up by the butchers, who 
reared and kept dogs for the sport. Yet, it is on 
record that some very respectable citizens also kept 
bull-dogs and found much enjoyment in the excite- 
ment of these fights. These practices were gradually 
abandoned by the better class of men, but did not 
disappear entirely for some years after the Revolution. 

Poulson's Advertiser of April, 1812, contained a 
complaint from a correspondent that on Easter Mon- 
day a certain neighborhood (not named) was a scene 
of riot and confusion on account of a cock-fight; 
also that a boxing-match was advertised at Bush 
Hill, which had been prevented by constables and 
aldermen. The writer took this occasion to lament 
the increasing wickedness of mankind. 

As late as 1821 cock-fighting was carried on, but 
the cock-pit was shunned by all who laid a claim to 
social standing. Wain, in " The Hermit in Phila- 
delphia," published in that year, says, — 

" Cocking, to which English ruffians are so generally addicted, is lim- 
ited to a very small number of Philadelphia fashionables. Several 
cock-pits, however, exist in the neighborhood of the city under the 
superintendence of men who have nothing further to dread from the 
opinion of the world. -Toward a certain quarter there is one of higher 
rank, to which some of our aspirants have the misfortune to belong. 
This iiarbarouB predilection subsides with tbe rude passions of youth, 
and I do not know one veteran cocker to disgrace the character of our 

At the time when the Council was so much exer- 
cised about tavern frays and disturbances that it had 
to increase the number of night-watchmen, there 
was, without doubt, a good deal of " gaming and 
curses loud and deep" in some of these haunts of 
vice, yet it is strangely true that while in England 
gambling was carried on to such an extent that the 
period of which we speak might be called the " age 
of gaming," this fashionable vice never prevailed to 
any alarming extent in Philadelphia. Card-playing, 
even for amusement, never became a general custom, 
nor was it at a later period the principal attraction in 
fashionable society receptions, as it was in New York, 
as stated by the witty Rebecca Frank, in a letter al- 
ready quoted in our chapter on Manners and Cus- 
toms. The condemnation by the Friends of all sorts 
of gambling as frivolous and injurious, and leading 
to loss of substance and waste of time, and by the 
Puritans as a sinful practice, had their weight with 
public opinion, and Philadelphia society sought more 
intellectual recreation than that of handling slips ot 
painted pasteboard. Still, it was not thought im- 
proper for sedate old gentlemen to sit down to a 
solemn rubber of whist, or perchance to a game of " all 
fours" or cribbage. But in every large or growing 
city there is always a class of people who care little 
for their reputation, and are not influenced by the 
opinion of good society. Among such there was 
much surreptitious gambling. The Legislature found 
it necessary to put a restraint upon this demoralizing 
practice by which the young and weak were lured 
to destruction, and by an act of Assembly, passed in 
1794, playing at cards, dice, billiards, bowls, shuffle- 
board, or any game of hazard or skill, for money or 
other valuable consideration, was liable to fine. 

Among the games of hazard prohibited by this act 
was one designated by the mysterious name of the 
" E. O." The extreme simplicity of this game was 
one of its chief attractions. On a round table, cov- 
ered with canvas or oil-cloth, were painted lines radi- 
ating from a small circle in the centre. Upon each 
division formed by these lines the letters " E" and 
"0" were painted alternately. On one of these let- 
ters, in any division, at his choice, the players staked 
their money ; the keeper of the game now placed a 
teetotum in the small circle in the centre of the board, 
and gave it a whirl ; the toy spun around, tracing an 
erratic circle over the lines, and finally died in one of 
the divisions, to the great joy of the player who had 
hit upon the lucky letter and the discomfiture of the 
others. That a certain skill in twirling the teetotum 
enabled the keeper to score regular profits is mani- 



fest, yet the dupes were not wanting to bet on the 
E. 0. This old game has reappeared at different 
periods under other names, and with various im- 
provements, the most artistic being the " menagerie," 
which was for a short time in vogue some thirty or 
forty years ago. Instead of letters, the table was 
ornamented with figures of animals, and the teetotum 
had octagonal sides. The elephant was the most 
difficult to reach, and a lucky hit on this animal 
brought considerable gain. Many went to "seethe 
elephant," who came back sorely disappointed and 
never boasted of what the sight had cost them. 

Billiards was a game much in vogue, though fre- 
quently denounced as gambling. A writer in the 
Repository, in 1802, said with fine sarcasm, — 

" Fur the benefit of the friends to mental improvement, to the refine- 
ment of human nature, and to the happiness of society, the theme of 
this shall be, ' The virtues of a billiard-fable.' The art of playing dex- 
terously on this table is one of the most elegant accomplishments of 
gentlemen of spirit and spunk in every quarter of the refined world. 

" There is something in it peculiarly adapted to the happy political 
constitution of the State. It reduces all to a perfect level. The sot, 
merchant, cobbler, captain, blacUsmith, spruce gallant, pickpocket, and 
jockey are all hale fellows well met, and merit is the only true criterion 
of eminence. Such a general and promiscuous collection must certainly 
have a most happy influence over the gay and thoughtless youths of 
this city. It was ever a virtue in the young to revere and imitate the 
aged. Happy for them it is that here they m;iy follow the example even 
of those whose gray hairs stimulated them to a redemption of their time 
by ttie constant repetition of memento mori." 

Another writer defends the game as a perfectly in- 
nocent amusement, provided that no sum of money 
whatever be staked, and ends by comparing it to the 
childish play of marbles : 

" Both games are played with balls ; the only difference is that the one 
are made of common stone, and the other of ivory, and that the one is 
driven forward by the hand, and the other with a stick. Now, I cannot 
see why anything sinful can be attributed to an elephant's tooth more 
than to a stone, or how the crime is greater by propelling a ball with a 
stick instead of the hand, or by playing on a table and in a room instead 
of at the corner of a street and on the ground. I think the greatest sin 
is to be attributed to the latter game instead of the former." 

For a short time pugilism, which had become fash- 
ionable in England, was taken in favor in Philadel- 
phia. In 1824, William Fuller, who styled himself 
" the celebrated pugilist from London," gave notice 
that he proposed to give " lessons in the above-named 
manly science, whereby gentlemen, after a few les- 
sons, will be enabled to chastise those who may offer 
violence, and protect themselves from the attacks of 
ruffians." In November of the same year, G. Kensett, 
" scientific boxer, from London,'' opened his school 
for teaching the art of self-defense. In February, 
1825, Kensett gave " a grand display of the useful 
art of self-defense," assisted by several amateurs. 

British boxers and French fencing-masters did not 
succeed, however, in exciting in the Philadelphians' 
breasts an inordinate fondness for the "ring" or mile 
d'armes. It is a singular fact that the native Ameri- 
can, in every part of the Union, though he be ever 
ready to fight his battles with the knife, the pistol, or 
the rifle, and he may on an emergency strike with his 

fist, has never taken kindly to scientific fisticuffs or 
the small-sword exercise. 

But the Philadelphians were fond of many sports 
requiring strength or agility, especially out-door 
sports. Bowls, ten-pins, quoit-throwing, bullets or 
"long bowls," the shuffle-board, with its heavy 
weights to be shoved or " shuffled" with a strong 
hand, guided by a cunning eye, were games which 
attracted crowds of visitors to the suburban inns and 
public gardens. A little betting on results may have 
thrown a spice of gambling in these amusements, but 
generally they were indulged in merely for the sake 
of the sport. 

The first place of public resort fitted up on the 
plan of the public gardens in London was at the 
Lower Ferry at Schuylkill, known as Gray's Ferry. 
It was opened to the public shortly after the Revolu- 
tion, and soon attained a well-merited popularity. 
Visitors, attracted by the novelty of the thing, were 
delighted with the tasteful arrangement of the place, 
where shaded walks, beautiful flowers, and artistic 
decorations combined to please the eye, while com- 
fortable boxes afforded places of rest, where refresh- 
ments of every kind could be obtained. The city 
poets — the muses have never lacked fervent worship- 
ers in Philadelphia — grew delirious over the beauties 
of the place, both natural and artificial, and the 
Columbian Magazine more than once admitted into its 
" Poet's Corner" " Verses upon Gray's Ferry," and 
" Lines" and other poetical effusions inspired by the 
same. Nor was the attractive resort celebrated by 
poets only, its praise was sung in prose as well. The 
following passage, clipped from one of these lauda- 
tory articles, bears evidence to the orderly disposition 
of the people: 

"It is remarkable that public gardens are so little disordered by the 
concourse of mixed multitudes. The reason of this must be that even 
rude minds are harmonized by the genius of the place, and are awed 
into veneration for its beauty. When the pleasure-grounds of the Messrs. 
Gray were first opened to the public, their friends apprehended vexa- 
tions mischief from the less cultivated part of their visitors; hut were 
agreeably disappointed, notwithstanding the novelty of the scene and 
that impatience of restraint which, in some degree, is a necessary evil 
in very free countries. In this respect, I place elegant gardens among 
the nurseries of national virtue. The sacred page, in conformity with 
our finer feelings, has laid the scene of man's first innocent and happy 
existence in a garden, and represents the future mansions of the just 
under the emhlems of a paradise planted with the trees of Life, and 
watered by the crystal streams that spring from the throne of God ! A 
mind accustomed to noble thoughts will frequently rise from Nature to 
Nature's Guil, and exclaim, with the poet, — 

" ' Hail ! Source of being ! — universal Soul 

Of heaven and earth ! Essential Presence, hail ! 
To Thee I bend the knee ! To Thee my thoughts 
Continual climb, who with a master hand 
Hast the great whole into perfection touched 1' " 

Among the amusements prepared for the entertain- 
ment of visitors were concerts and fire-works, — the 
latter the most popular at all times with the crowd. 
On the 4th of July, 1790, the proprietors of Gray's 
Garden gave a splendid exhibition. The floating 
bridge was decorated with shrubbery and flowers, and 
with flags representing all the States in the Union. 



The ship " Union" — a prominent object in the Fede- 
ral procession of 1789 — lay off the gardens, flying the 
colors of all nations. At night the " Union" appeared 
in a blaze of light, as did also a floating island, with a 
farm-house and garden. The portraits of the Presi- 
dents of the United States, and the many statues of 
heathen deities which decorated the gardens, were 
illuminated also. Thousands assembled at the ferry 
to admire the fairy-like scene, and it was pronounced 
a great success, — the grandest spectacle, in fact, pre- 
sented since the Federal procession pageant. 

At that time Gray's Garden had already a rival in 
the public favor. This was Harrowgate, in the upper 
part of the county, where a mineral spring had been 
discovered, possessing, it was claimed, great medi- 
cinal virtues. The proprietor, George Esterley, adver- 
tised his " Medical Waters for Drinking or Bathing," 
giving the analysis made by Drs. Rush, Mease, and 
Streble ; but mindful of the comforts of the well as 
much as of the cure of the ailing, he ended his ad- 
vertisement with the following inviting promise : 
" He is determined to keep the best of liquors of all 
and every kind. Breakfast, dinners, tea, coffee, and 
fruits of all kinds may be had at the shortest notice, 
and also excellent accommodations for boarding and 
lodging," which leads to the belief that brandy and 
rum did not destroy the virtues of the Harrowgate 
mineral waters. 

The city poets strung up their lyres and forthwith 
sang the praise of the new Helicon. Harrowgate 
became subsequently a favorite resort during the 
pleasant season of the year, less, however, on account 
of its spring than for the attractions it presented as a 
public garden. It was a famous place for concerts 
and exhibitions, and was sometimes called " Vaux- 
hall." In the summer of 1792, Monsieur Rolong, a 
famous harpist, appeared here. Messrs. Phill, Schulz, 
Tremner, Roth, Christhilf, Spangerberg, etc., assisted 
in an instrumental concert. Transparencies were ex- 
hibited, illuminated in the Chinese style. Kenna, of 
the Northern Liberty Theatre, gave a grand concert 
at Harrowgate, July 4, 1793. 

The Wigwam baths, on the banks of the Schuylkill, 
at the foot of Race Street, were fitted up in 1791 by 
John Ooyle. This establishment boasted of a Bowling 
Green, two shower-baths and one plunging-bath, but 
it had other attractions, alluded to by Priest, in his 
" Travels through the United States," 1793-97, when 
he says, "One evening, at six o'clock, a party of 
pleasure went to a tea-garden and tavern romantically 
situated on the banks of the Schuylkill, famous for 
serving up coffee in style. On the table there were 
coffee, cheese, sweet cakes, hung beef, sugar, pickled 
salmon, butter, crackers, ham, cream, and bread. 
The ladies all declared it was a most charming relish." 

An attempt was made, in 1796, by Bates and Darley, 
performers at the new theatre, to establish a popular 
place of resort at Bush Hill. They leased for this 
purpose Andrew Hamilton's mansion with its fine 

gardens, but their plan was not such as to command 
success, and the attempts to put it in execution proved 
a failure. By this plan one hundred subscribers, at 
one hundred dollars each, were declared necessary, — 
the money to be paid quarterly. The subscribers 
were to have free tickets to the exhibitions, concerts, 
and entertainments, and were to be repaid by Bates 
and Darley, in ten years, by annual installments of 
ten dollars. 

If Bates and Darley's scheme proved to be imprac- 
ticable, their selection of Bush Hill as a place of 
public resort showed judgment; for a few years later 
the mansion and grounds were leased by Lozout & 
Brown, who established there a public garden, and 
their venture was quite profitable. J. E. Lozout, who 
was a pyrotechnist "from France and Germany," 
gave a fine exhibition of fire-works on the grounds. 
It gave so much satisfaction that to gratify the public 
wish, on the Fourth of July, he gave another grand 
pyrotechnic display at Richardet's Long-ball Alley, 
below the new Catholic church, on Fourth Street. 
The fact that the tickets of admission were sold for one 
dollar speaks well for the excellence of the entertain- 
ment and the liberality of the patriotic spectators. 

" Louth Hall," kept by John Hyde, on Tenth 
Street, between Race and Arch Streets, was taken by 
Louis Fouquet in 1803, and opened as a public gar- 
den. It soon became famous for its excellent cook- 
ery and the fine style in which Fouquet served up 
dinners and banquets. Military companies and other 
societies gave it the preference for their annual ban- 
quets. The place enjoyed a deserved popularity dur- 
ing about ten years ; after that, the cutting through of 
Cherry Street having spoiled the grounds, the busi- 
ness declined, and Fouquet gave it up in 1816. The 
place ceased to be a garden after his retirement. 

There were some nurseries and botanic gardens 
which, being established originally for the cultivation 
of flowers, trees, and plants, became, in consequence 
of the elegance of the manner in which they were 
laid out and the attractions of the gardens and floral 
splendor, places of resort. Some of them furnished 
refreshments, edible and potable. Among the former 
were tea, coffee, milk, relishes, soups, etc. Some of 
them sold liquors, the most popular of which among 
those who resorted there were mead, metheglin, malt 
beverages, ice cream, etc. 

One of the oldest was that of Daniel Engelman, 
florist and seedsman. He was a Dutchman from Har- 
lem, Holland, who came to Philadelphia in 1759. At 
an early period he established his nursery and garden 
on the north side of Arch Street, between Schuylkill 
Seventh [Sixteenth] and Schuylkill Eighth [Fif- 
teenth]. He was still at that place in 1822. After 
be relinquished it, aud about 1826-27, Thomas Smith 
became proprietor, and opened it as the Labyrinth 

George Honey, formerly clerk to the County Com- 
missioners, also established a garden at an early 



period. It was quite large, having four hundred and 
ninety-five feet frontage on Race Street, five hundred 
and seven on Schuylkill Third, and five hundred and 
fifty-six on Schuylkill Second. Thomas Birch, gar- 
dener, was established here as early as 1811. John 
MacAran, who had been gardener for seven years for 
William Hamilton, of the Woodlands, and who also 
had laid out and improved Lemon HiU for Henry 
Pratt, went into business with him as nurseryman, 
florist, and seedsman at the beginning of that year. 
They remained together until 1822. Birch relin- 
quished control of the garden about 1824, and it was 
afterward kept by August D'Arras. It contained about 
six acres. 

Gray's Garden ceased to be a place of public 
amusement about the end of the eighteenth century, 
although it continued to receive patronage as a place 
of refreshment. Its distance from the city was the 
principal objection to it, and when equally attractive 
gardens were established at more accessible points its 
popularity waned and finally disappeared. After the 
Grays, Joseph Reed kept the garden and ferry until 
1803, when Isaac Tucker became the lessee. He was 
there but one year, and was succeeded by James 
Coyle, formerly of the Indian Queen Tavern. By 
that time the garden had ceased to be a place of 

The same causes brought about the decline of Har- 
rowgate, notwithstanding the virtues of its waters and 
the musical attractions offered by Gillingham and 
Hupfeld in 1810, when they got up a series of enter- 
tainments on the plan of the celebrated London 
" Vauxhall." Harrowgate was offered for sale in 1816. 
The old Lebanon Garden, at the corner of Tenth 
and South Streets, is better remembered as a popular 
tavern than as a place of amusement. It became a 
favorite resort for old Democrats. Among the events 
connected with its history are a display of fire-works 
in 1817, and a bear-roasting on the 4th of March, 
1829, when Gen. Jackson was inaugurated President; 
also a Democratic celebration on the Fourth of July, 
1832, when a man was fatally injured by the explosion 
of a cannon. 

The old ante-Revolutionary place of resort, Centre- 
House Garden, on the south side of Market Street, at 
the southwest corner of Schuylkill Eighth [now Fif- 
teenth] Street, had not entirely lost its popularity at 
the beginning of the present century. A concert 
was given there on the 4th of July, 1800, by Messrs. 
McDonald, Walen, and others. In the summer of 
1808 a Mr. Victorien erected an amphitheatre at the 
Centre-House Garden, and announced that the per- 
formances would consist in feats on the tight-rope, 
ground and lofty tumbling, etc., in which he would 
be the principal actor. The building was opened in 
July, 1809, by a Mr. Martin, as a "summer theatre.'' 
Martin sent up a balloon on the Fourth of July. 

The Lombardy Garden was appropriated to public 
use about 1800. It was situated on the west side of 

Centre Square and on the north side of Market 
Street. It occupied the lot now bounded by Market, 
Filbert, the street formerly called Oak and Merrick 
[now a portion of Broad Street], and Schuylkill 
Eighth [now Fifteenth Street]. James Garner be- 
came the occupant, and provided " breakfast, tea, 
and turtle-soup" for his customers. Summer concerts 
were also given there. In 1803, Jacob Kraafs was 
the lessee and, gave notice that concerts would be 
given, " admittance, twenty-five cents, part in re- 
freshments on the plan of Sadler's Wells." He also 
changed the name of the place to " The New Sadler's 
Wells," but in a very short time the old name was 
resumed. John F. Renault gave a grand exhibition 
of fire-works in May, 1805. Among other things 
presented to dazzle the public were figures of Wash- 
ington and Jefferson. In June, 1811, Charles J. 
Delacroix, for nine years director of the festivals at 
Vauxhall, New York, gave two exhibitions of pyro- 
technic art at Lombardy Garden. In 1819 the prop- 
erty was advertised to be sold. In May, 1822, An- 
thony Elton gave notice that he had opened, at the 
old Lombardy Garden, the Centre Square Hotel. 1 

As all the young people agree that eating ice-cream 
is an amusement, Bosio, the Italian confectioner, is 
entitled to an honorable mention in this chapter, 
since his " ice-cream house" opened in 1800, in Ger- 
mantown, " opposite the Spread Eagle," was the first 
establishment of the kind known to the Philadel- 
phiaus. Moreover, Bosio's success induced others to 
embark in the ice-cream business. Meanwhile greater 
attention had been given to the cultivation of the 
strawberry, and it was discovered that the flavor of 
this fruit combined admirably with that of fresh 
cream. The lucky possessors of strawberry-patches 
and milch cows invited the public to come and par- 
take of this delicacy, and as no discovery is ever made 
but it leaves room for improvement, after a time " ice- 
cream" was substituted for the plain "cream" and 

Among those " strawberry-gardens" which com- 
batted successfully against the old places of resort by 
offering their heated and thirsty visitors some cool- 
ing, delicious fruit bathed in rich, fresh cream, in- 
stead of the coarse viands and intoxicating drinks of 
yore, the following were noted: 

In June, 1808, notice was given that Strawberry 
Hill, beyond the Robin Hood Tavern on Ridge road, 
was open for the reception of company. It was pro- 
vided with an abundance of excellent strawberries 
and cream. 

George Esher, in June, 1824, gave notice to the 
public that he was prepared to furnish strawberries 
and cream at his strawberry-garden on Ridge turn- 
pike, two and a half miles from the city. It is very 
probable that his place was at Strawberry Hill. 

1 The Pennsylvania Railroad depot now occupies the site of tins 



There is reason to believe that the premises are now 
in the park, and are known as Strawberry Mansion. 
Strawberry Hill was originally the country-seat of 
Commodore John Barry. 

Daniel Kochersperger, in 1824-25, apprised the 
public that he was ready to furnish them with straw- 
berries and cream at his farm on Francis Lane (now 
Fairmount Avenue), between Ridge road and the 
new penitentiary. 

Vincent Chirico gave notice in April, 1824, that he 
had opened Washington Garden, at the corner of 
Hamilton Street, Morrisville, near the water-works 
at Fairmount, where he was ready to dispose of 
cakes, fruit, ice-cream, etc. The situation of the 
garden was probably near the intersection of Ham- 
ilton and Morris Streets, which is now commonly 
called Callowhill Street, although not in a direct east 
and west line with that street. 

The Moyameftsing Botanic Garden, which was es- 
tablished in 1820 by Alexander Parker, was particu- 
larly noted for some box-trees of unusual size which 
stood near the door. These curious specimens of 
luxuriant vegetation and horticultural skill were cut 
and trimmed with fanciful taste so as to present the 
appearance of a square base or pedestal, two or three 
feet high, upon which rested a huge round ball ; 
above this rose a sort of spire, making altogether a 
very singular figure. Hundreds of visitors came, year 
after year, to gaze on these box-trees, wondering how 
they could preserve the symmetry of their outlines 
while perceptibly, though slowly, growing larger. The 
Moyamensing garden was on Prime Street (Love 
Lane), between Eighth and Eleventh Streets. At that 
time Ninth and Tenth Streets were not opened as far 
as Prime Street. When the extension of the city 
necessitated the farther opening of these streets, it 
happened that Tenth Street went exactly through the 
middle of Parker's Garden, leaving the old house just 
beyond the line of the sidewalk. 

Another fine nursery garden was that established 
on the lot bounded by Filbert, Arch, Schuylkill Fifth 
[Eighteenth] and Schuylkill Sixth [Seventeenth] 
Streets, by John MacAran, already mentioned as 
having been Birch's partner. MacAran supplied bis 
visitors with strawberries and cream, and fitted out 
his garden in a very tasteful style. He built a large, 
high conservatory, in which were displayed large 
plants and trees. His hot-houses were long, spacious, 
and convenient to walk through. The out-door 
flower-beds and the garden, with its little boxes, vines, 
and shrubbery, were all arranged in good taste, and 
with the occasional display of a rare exotic, and illu- 
minations with colored lamps on gala evenings, the 
place commanded a large and profitable attendance. 
MacAran's garden contained about four acres. 

MacAran's had a collection of living birds and 
animals, and the place became a concert-garden and 
vaudeville theatre about 1840, and fire-works were 
exhibited there. A spectacle that never failed to 

attract the crowd was a fine representation of the 
eruption of Mount Vesuvius. 

Pyrotechnic exhibitions were always popular in 
Philadelphia, and at a remote period were the prin- 
cipal feature in all public celebrations. They were 
so well received that artificers found it profitable to 
give them regularly on a minor scale. On special 
occasions these exhibitions were of a rare degree of 
perfection. Watson's "Annals" contain the following 
description of the great fire-works exhibited in Sep- 
tember, 1758, on the Delaware River, in honor of the 
reduction of Cape Breton by Gen. Amherst: "It 
represented a citadel in the centre and on each flank 
a tower. On shore were other works to represent the 
French. Then a great exhibition of fire ensued, and 
the sounds of cannouade, etc. The citadel ap- 
proached to storm the works on shore; they sprung a 
mine and surrendered. Then succeeded rejoicings 
by a swarm of rockets from the towers, etc. This 
was certainly a very grand display for so small a 
community as Philadelphia then was to effect. The 
truth was, the enterprise of Cape Breton was deemed 
an American affair of great merit, a thing in which 
the northern and middle colonies gave themselves 
great credit." 

During the war of independence, when the Cheva- 
lier de Luzerne, ambassador of France, gave a splen- 
did night entertainment in honor of the birth of the 
dauphin of France (poor little Louis XVII., who was 
destined to die a prisoner, after untold sufferings), the 
principal feature on that occasion was a brilliant dis- 
play of fire-works. The pyrotechnist who prepared 
that exhibition was probably the Frenchman, Jean 
Laugeay. We find him, in October, 1781, exhibiting 
" a very grand fire-works, by a girl eleven years old, 
consisting of two English men-of-war fighting two 
Americans in force, and the battle shall be given to 
the Americans." In 1782 he gave an exhibition in 
the State-House yard (price of admission, one dollar), 
and on the 4th of July, 1787, another grand exhibi- 
tion at Reade's Centre House, Market Street (admis- 
sion, is. ad.). 

Ambroise & Co., " fire-workers, painters, and mech- 
anicians," — also French, — erected an amphitheatre in 
Mulberry Street, between Eighth and Ninth, where 
they gave regular exhibitions. A grand scene, which 
they brought out in September, 1794, and repeated 
many times afterward, was a representation of the 
taking of the Bastille, in which the shattering of the 
drawbridge was depicted with awful fidelity, and balls 
were "seen issuing from the cannon and musketry." 
Ambroise & Co. may claim the honor of having been 
the first to manufacture inflammable gas and exhibit 
the effect of gas-light in America. In August, 1796, 
they advertised an exhibition of fire-works, part of 
which was composed of combustibles in the usual 
style of pyrotechnics. The other part was composed 
"of inflammable air, by the assistance of light, as 
lately practiced in Europe." By this latter means 



were " exhibited an Italian parterre," " a picture of 
the mysteries of Masonry," " a view of a superb 
country-seat,'' " a grand portico," etc. There were 
eight pieces thus exhibited. Another fine exhibition 
given by these artists was the display of fire-works in 
February, 1796, in honor of the general peace reign- 
ing throughout the world at that time. The celebra- 
tion was gotten up by subscription at Michael Am- 
broise & Co.'s amphitheatre, in Arch Street, between 
Eighth and Ninth. There was a grand triumphal 
arch twenty-six feet in height and twenty feet in 
width, decorated with pilasters, statues, vases, baskets, 
and inscriptions. 

The oldest museum that we hear of in Philadelphia 
was that of Pierre Eugene du Simitiere, which was, 
at best, but a private collection, temporarily opened 
to the public. Du Simitiere was a Swiss-French 
gentleman, of good education, a writer and a painter. 
He had a decided turn for collecting curiosities, lit- 
erary or natural. He had lived in New York, and he 
spoke and wrote English correctly ; he came to Phila- 
delphia before the Revolution. He wrote a great deal. 
Five volumes of his curious MSS., with some rare fugi- 
tive printed papers, are in the Philadelphia Library. 
His collection of curiosities became so much spoken 
of that he was frequently importuned by applications 
for permission to examine it. In 1782 he advertised it 
as the "American Museum," stating that it was con- 
stantly increasing, and that he was frequently applied 
to for an inspection of it; he had, therefore, set apart 
Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays, between the 
hours of ten and twelve in the morning, and three 
and four in the afternoon, an hour for each company, 
not to exceed six in number. His house was in Arch 
Street, above Fourth. The price of the tickets was 
half a dollar each. Du Simitiere afterwards pro- 
posed to make his museum a permanent public exhi- 
bition, and he applied for assistance from the com- 
monwealth to enable him to enlarge his building, but 
his application was unsuccessful. 

In 1784, Charles Wilson Peale opened a museum at 
his residence, corner of Third and Lombard Streets. 
Mr. Peale had painted and preserved a large collec- 
tion of portraits, principally of Revolutionary men ; 
to this interesting gallery of paintings he added 
many natural curiosities collected by himself, and he 
opened his rooms to the public. The exhibition was 
a success from the first. The collection of portraits 
■was a patriotic enterprise which could not fail to 
meet with general commendation. It served to pre- 
serve the features of the heroes who had fought the 
battles of the republic, or had assisted in saving it 
by their wise counsels and their examples of disin- 
terested patriotism. Already many of the originals 
slept the eternal sleep from which there is no waking, 
and though their deeds were remembered, posterity 
could have formed no idea of those faces lighted up 
by the noblest passion but for the pencil of Charles 
Wilson Peale. 

This indefatigable and zealous artist worked day 
and night to make his museum an institution of 
which Philadelphia should be proud. His collection 
of natural curiosities increased so rapidly that his 
rooms could no longer contain them. In 1792 he dis- 
covered a new process for the preservation of beasts 
and birds, and he applied to the Legislature for assist- 
ance to enable him to perpetuate the advantages of 
his valuable discovery, which, he claimed, surpassed 
any previous process. He had already on several 
occasions sought to obtain aid from the State, for he 
held that his museum, though the undertaking of a 
private individual, was a public benefit. 

In 1794 a committee of the House, which had 
visited the museum, made a very favorable report, 
recommending that a loan of one thousand dollars 
be made to Peale. The House, however, refused to 
adopt this recommendation. 

At this juncture the Philosophical Society nobly 
came forward and granted Peale the use of its build- 
ing in Fifth Street, below Chestnut. Thither the 
museum was transferred in September, 1794, and its 
importance was better appreciated when the numer- 
ous specimens were properly arranged in the spacious 
rooms of the society. Here Mr. Peale began to form 
a zoological garden in a small way. It was fitted up 
in the rear of the building on Independence Square. 
Among other live specimens there was an eagle, over 
whose cage was this inscription, "Feed me well, and 
I'll live a hundred years." Mr. Peale manipulated 
wax with as much skill as he wielded the brush. The 
Eev. Manassah Cutler, who visited the museum while 
it was still at Third and Lombard Streets, relates the 
following anecdote : 

"Ira mediately after dinner we called on Mr. Peale to see his collec- 
tions of paintings and natural curiosities. We were conducted into a 
room by a boy, who told us Mr. Peale would wait on us in a minute or 
two. He desired ug, however, to walk into the room where the curiosi- 
ties were, and showed us a long, narrow entry which led into the room. 
I observed, through a glass window at my right hand, a gentleman close 
to me, standing witli a pencil in one hand and a small sheet of ivory in 
the other, and liis eyes directed to the opposite side of the room, as 
though he was takiDg some object on his ivory sheet. Dr. Clarkson did 
not see this man until ho stepped into the room; but instantly turned 
about, and came back, saying, ' Mr. Peale is very busy taking tlie picture 
of something with hi6 pencil. We will step back into the other room, 
and wait till he is at leisure. 1 We returned through the PDtry; but as 
we entered the room we met Mr. Peale coming to us. The doctor started 
back in astonishment, and cried out, ' Mr. Peale, how is it possible you 
should get out of the other room to meet us here?' Mr. Peale smiled 
and said, ' I have not been in the other room for some time.' ' No 1' said 
Br. Clarkson. ' Did I not see you there this moment with your pencil 
and ivory?' ' Why do you think you did?' asked Peale. l Why do I 
think I did ?' replied Dr. Clarkson. ' I saw you there if I ever saw you 
in my life.' ' Well,' says Peale, ' lot us go and see.' 

" When we relumed we found the man standing as before. It was a 
piece of waxwork which Mr. Peale had just finished, in which he had 
taken a likeness of himself." 

Mr. Cutler says of the collection, — 

"The walls of the room were covered with paintings, both portrait 
and historic. Under a small gallery bis natural curiosities are arranged 
in a most romantic and amusing manner. There was a mound of earth, 
considerably raised and covered with green turf, from which a number 
of trees ascended and branched out in different directions. On the de- 



clivity of tli is mound was a small thicket, and just below it an artificial 
pond ; on the other side a number of larye and small rocks of different 
kinds, collected from different parts of the earth. At the foot of the 
mound were holes dug, and the earth thrown up, to show the different 
kinds of clay, — ochre, coal, marl, etc., — which he had collected from 
various parts ; also ores and minerals. Around the pond was a beach, 
on which was exhibited a fine assortment of shells, turtles, frogs, lizards, 
water-snakes, etc. In the pond was a collection of fisb, with their skins 
stuffed, water-fowl, 6uch as geese, ducks, cranes, herons, etc., all having 
the appearance of life, fur their skins were admirably preserved. On 
the mound were such birds as commonly walk on the ground, etc." 

But the great curiosity that attracted all Philadel- 
phia to the museum, some years later, was the skeleton 
of the mammoth. Peale got the first information 
about the discovery of this skeleton in 1785. The 
first bones were brought to him by Dr. Browne, for 
the purpose of making drawings of them. Mr. Peale 
often gazed on these drawings, and thought what a 
grand thing it would be to procure an entire skeleton. 
The occasion, so long wished for, presented itself in 
the autumn of 1799. In digging a marl-pit in the 
vicinity of Newburgh, on the river Hudson, some 
workmen came upon many bones of extraordinary 
size. Peale, learning of the discovery through the 
newspapers, proceeded to the spot and succeeded in 
obtaining a collection of bones. Some portions of 
the skeleton were wanting, and artificial ones had to 
be substituted. The bones collected belonged to more 
than one animal, and after completing the first skele- 
ton it was found that a second might be put together. 
This was done by Rembrandt and Raphael Peale, who 
took this second skeleton to England in 1802. They 
failed to sell it there, and brought it back to this 
country in 1803. In honor of the finishing of the 
second mammoth a collation was given within the 
cavity of the skeleton to twelve gentlemen. This 
original feast was the subject of a long article in the 
Portfolio, in which all the toasts, many of them witty, 
were given, as well as a long poem written for the 

Peale had many warm friends and admirers, and 
after the removal of the Legislature from Philadel- 
phia they exerted themselveB on his behalf to obtain 
the use of a vacant portion of the State-House. By 
an act passed on the 17th of March, 1802, Mr. Peale 
was authorized to occupy the east room of the lower 
story (now known as the Independence Hall) and all 
the upper stories. He established his museum in the 
second story. Additions to the curiosities on exhibi- 
tion were constantly made, and Mr. Peale spared 
neither pains nor money to make the museum worthy 
of the public patronage. Until 1806, the place was 
open to visitors during daytime only, owing to the 
difficulty of lighting large rooms with the ordinary 
lamps and candles in use at that time. In that year 
the proprietor gave notice that the museum would be 
lighted twice a week with patent lamps and candles 
equal to the light of two hundred and twenty ordinary 
lamps of candles. These evening exhibitions were 
generally well attended, for, in addition to their being 
an accommodation to the general public, there was 

always some novel feature introduced to make the ex- 
hibitions more attractive. In this Mr. Peale was as- 
sisted by his sons, — Rubens, Franklin, and Titian 
Peale. They gave lectures and experiments in chem- 
istry, philosophy, exhibitions of the magic lantern, 
philosophical fire-works, electric experiments, and 
other entertainments, scientific and instructive. 

Charles Wilson Peale and Titian Peale, assisted by 

Fenton and James Griffith, were the taxidermists 

of the museum. In 1809, Mr. Peale commenced a 
collection of stuffed monkeys, dressed as human beings, 
and engaged in some of the occupations familiar to 
man. The first exhibition represented a poet and a 
painter, with another individual sitting for his por- 
trait in the artist's studio. Others followed, and in 
each new group some comical effect was obtained. 
Monkeys were represented as engaged in the various 
trades, and the contrast between their grave occupa- 
tions and their mischievous faces and ridiculous at- 
attitudes was extremely amusing. Peale's monkey 
tradesmen live in the memory of many an aged Phila- 

So many specimens had been added to the museum 
that the place was crowded, and there were many 
duplicates. Rembrandt Peale added to this surplus 
stock a collection of natural curiosities, which he 
purchased from James Savage, and he proceeded to 
Baltimore, where he established a museum and gal- 
lery of fine arts in Holliday Street. In January, 
1818, the "Great Sea-Serpent" was exhibited at 
Peale's Museum. This monster, captured in the 
month of September of the preceding year off the 
coast of Massachusetts, bad been submitted to the 
examination of the Linnsean Society of New England, 
and by it named Scoliophis Atlanticus. J. R. Peniman 
painted a grand picture of the capture of the sea- 
serpent, and this picture, nineteen feet in length by 
nine feet in height, was added to the treasures of 
the museum. Another sea-monster — a " devil-fish," 
twelve feet long, fifteen feet broad, and weighing two 
thousand pounds — was exhibited at the museum in 
1823. Occasionally the place was opened to other 
exhibitions besides those of natural curiosities. 
Thus, in 1820, the " Pandean Band," consisting of a 
single performer, an Italian named Signor Heleue, 
who played on five different instruments at the same 
time, was engaged. He was certainly a living curi- 
osity, if not a " natural" one, for by using his hands, 
elbows, and knees, he managed to play on the Italian- 
viola, the Turkish cymbals, and the tenor drum, 
while he blew into a set of pandean pipes thrust into 
his waistcoat, and by wagging his head tinkled the 
Chinese bells fixed thereon as a sort of helmet, pre- 
senting a grotesque rather than artistic appearance. 
The " orchestra-man" has long ceased to be a curiosity, 
but at that time he drew well. 

The art gallery connected with Peale's Museum 
contained principally portraits painted by C. W. Peale 
himself, and by his sons at a later date. They will be 



treated under their proper head in our chapter on 

Peale's Museum was absorbed into the Philadelphia 
Museum Company, which was incorporated by act of 
the Legislature in February, 1821. The corporators 
were Pierce Butler, Raphael Peale, Rembrandt Peale, 
Coleman Sellers, and Rubens Peale, — all of whom, 
except Butler, being members of the Peale family. 
It was organized on the 14th of March, 1821, and the 
trustees were Pierce Butler, Professor Robert Patter- 
son, Zaccheus Collins, Coleman Sellers, and Rubens 
Peale. The company established a series of scientific 
lectures, to be illustrated by articles in the possession 
of the company. This was a good plan to diffuse 
knowledge in the most entertaining manner. These 
interesting lectures were delivered by the following 
gentlemen : On Mineralogy, Dr. Gerard Troost ; Zo- 
ology, Thomas Say ; Comparative Anatomy, Dr. 
Richard Harlan ; Physiology, Dr. John D. Godman. 
The conservator in zoology was Titian Peale, and the 
manager Rubens Peale. Charles Wilson Peale de- 
livered a lecture on Natural History, in 1823. In 
1828 the museum was removed to the Arcade, where 
it remained until 1838. 

On the 4th of July of that year the Philadelphia 
Museum building, at the northeast corner of Ninth 
and Sansom Streets, was opened for exhibition. The 
museum was supposed to have outgrown the accom- 
modations for the storage and exhibition of the col- 
lection at the Arcade. As early as Dec. 22, 1835, 
leave was given to the Museum Company, which was 
incorporated in 1821, to change its capital so that five 
hundred shares of two hundred dollars each should 
be divided in value into one thousand shares of one 
hundred dollars each. This would only have been a 
change without increase of capital. But permission 
was given to increase the number of shares to four 
thousand, which would swell the capital to four hun- 
dred thousand dollars. In the act it was declared 
that no part of the museum should be sold except 
duplicates. With the increased stock and in an en- 
larged spirit of enterprise the managers of the mu- 
seum undertook the erection of a splendid building. 
It was two stories in height, each with very lofty ceil- 
ings. The length was two hundred and thirty-eight 
feet, nearly three-quarters of the square, extending 
from Ninth toward Eighth Street. The width was 
seventy feet. The second story ran over all. The 
first story extended back to an inclosed portion cut 
off from the main building, an apartment by itself 
which was called the lecture-room. It had its sepa- 
rate entrance, and the ticket-office, etc., on Sansom 
Street, and ran eastward toward a square passage and 
gateway, which ran to and connected with an alley 
of about twenty feet in width extending eastward 
from Ninth Street, and on the north side of the mu- 
seum building. This alley separated the museum 
from the rear end of buildings of Chestnut Street, the 
principal of -which was Cook's Circus, afterward Bur- 

ton's National Theatre. The first story of the build- 
ing was reached by the doorway on Ninth Street. It 
was appropriated on the opening for the use of Dunn's 
Chinese Museum, a very fine collection, which had 
been made by Nathan Dunn, merchant, during a long 
residence in China. This exhibition was a life-like 
representation of Chinese men and women in their 
proper costumes and engaged in their business, social 
avocations, and amusements. 1 

The second story was approached by a spacious 
stairway. The long room was of sufficient height to 
admit of a gallery all round it near the walls. In the 
middle of the floor, mounted upon a high pedestal, 
was the skeleton of the great mammoth, an elephant, 
other animals and objects, extending from the front 

1 In the " History of Chestnut Street," by Caspor Souder, Jr., is the 
following description of Dunn's Chinese Museum : 

"The collection was wonderfully complete. First, there were life-size 
and life-like wax fignreB which represented every order of the Chinese 
from the blind beggar to the mandarin of the first class. These figures 
were all dressed exactly as the originals dress, and all were presented in 
the exercise of their respective vocations. The huge room iu whicli the 
collection was exhibited was fitted up with compartments in which were 
represented Chinese streets, ChineBe parlors, Chinese chambers, Chinese 
workshops, Chinese stores, and Chinese temples. All these were appro- 
priately furnished, not with painted shams, in the way of toolB, fixtures, 
etc., but with real substantial articles which were made in China, and 
which at that moment had their counterparts in the houses and shops 
of the Celestials. There was a cabinet of curiously-wrought furniture, 
and in which a party of high government officials, with their sctibes, 
etc., were engaged in the discussion of some business matters. The 
waxen mandarins were all clad in the splendid embroidered garments 
of their order. And the descriptive catalogue would teach the visitor 
how to distinguish the different grades of officials by the color of the 
button on the top of the cap. Close to where the great men were in 
council would be a group of their wives, with their Utile feet peeping 
out from their embroidered shirts, and (the wives) taking tea together 
out of tiny porcelain cups while their lords were engaged in discussing 
the affairs of the central flowery kingdom. 

" The store- keeper was behind his counter, just as he was to be seen in 
the -streets of Canton, and with rolls of real silk upon the shelves of his 
shop. A tawny-skinned customer was represented making his selec- 
tion of goods; a clerk was busy at his desk making entries in hi* books 
witli the aid of a camel's-hah- pencil and a stick of India ink ; a beggar 
was soliciting alms; the walls were adorned with wise maxims from 
Confucius, and a Chinese store was displayed to the life. Iu the narrow 
apartment which represented the open street were coolies trotting along 
with some luxurious individual suspended in a 'sedan-chair 1 from bam- 
boo poles ; the ChineBe barber was seen plying his trade upon the ' nob* 
of a customer iu the open air ; the itinerant tinker was blowing his fire 
to commence operations upon a cracked dinner-pot ; an ancient cobbler 
was busy upon a damaged shoe; and even the bonlman who spends his 
entire life upon a frail skiff on the Canton River was represented, with 
his wil'o and his Utile ones, on board a real boat taken from the river tiy 
Mr. Dunn, with all its real fixtures and appurtenances complete even to 
the gourd which was lied to tile young amphibious Celestials to keep 
them afloat iu case of a sudden dip in the river. There were models ot 
Chinese houses, temples, bridges, boats, war junks, etc.; practical agri- 
cultuial implements jn«t as they had been used by Chinese husbandmen 
for hundreds of years; Chinese weapons ol war, Chinese coins, Chiuese 
idols, Chinese books; ill short everything made by the Chinese or used 
by them was there in its lull proportions, or, if too unwieldy, it was 
repiesented by models. The collection was very al tractive for several 
years, and the interest was increased by the presence of a couple of real 
Chinamen in their naiivo costume, one of whom was a clerkly gentle- 
man, who u-ed to write the names of visitors upon a card iu Chinese 
characters at the consideration of ashilling a head. His brother I hina- 
man was a musician, who was wont to discourse the most abominable 
strains that were ever produced by a i-quawking human voice and an 
instrument which seemed to beacruBB between a hurdy-gurdy and a 
plantation banjo." 



to the back, and leaving the centre of the grand hall 
free of other obstructions. The natural history col- 
lection, animals, beasts, birds, etc., were placed in 
alcoves, lighted from the many windows on the north 
and south sides. The gallery floors were sustained 
on the top of the cases of the alcoves. There were 
cases also in this part of the building between the 
windows, but not so deep as on the main floor. A 
fine landscape scene filled up the extreme end of the 
hall from gallery to ceiling. The profile department, 
a most attractive and popular adjunct of the museum 
from the time of its being in the State-House, was 
arranged for taking silhouettes about the middle of 
the north gallery. Portraits of the old Peale collec- 
tion, two or three hundred in number, were arranged 
along the fronts of the galleries. The arrangement 
was attractive. The collection had never been shown 
to such advantage, but, unfortunately, the enterprise 
was not successful. The lot had been taken up from 
Isaac Brown Parker on a heavy ground-rent. The 
building is said to have cost one hundred and thirty 
thousand dollars. While the patronage would have 
been liberal enough in a situation where the expenses 
were not so heavy, they were not sufficient to keep up 
either of these collections. At first the visitors were 
very considerable in number, but when local curiosity 
had been fully satisfied, the ordinary run of business 
was not sufficient to keep up the establishment. 
Dunn's collection was the first to yield. After two 
or three years it was removed to London, with prom- 
ise that it should be returned in a few years. It was 
believed that Mr. Dunn intended to bequeath it to 
the city of Philadelphia as a free museum. But 
financial difficulties intervened, and the design was 
not accomplished. The Chinese collection was re- 
moved about 1842-43. The lower room, thence famil- 
iarly known as the Chinese Museum, although no 
museum was there, was thrown open for use for balls, 
concerts, public meetings, exhibitions, etc. Peale's 
museum, in the upper story, had a longer tenancy. 
After the novelty had ceased and the receipts had 
begun to fall off seriously, the managers instituted 
additional attractions in the shape of cheap concerts. 
Norton, the trumpeter, Mrs. Watson, and Mrs. Bailly 
were principal attractions. After them came the 
Shaws, — Rosina (afterward Mrs. Charles Howard 
and Mrs. Harry Watkins, actress), Mary (afterward 
Mrs. Fogg, afterward Mrs. Krollman), Josephine 
(afterward Mrs. Russell and Mrs. John Hoey), and 
David T. Shaw. Prices came down. The Norton & 
Watson concerts were fifty cents admission, — twenty- 
five cents to the museum and twenty-five cents for 
the music. The Shaw concerts fell to twenty-five 
cents. At a later day " levy" concerts were given in 
the museum and in the hall of the Chinese Museum. 
The programmes were of immense length, srfmetimes 
having upon them thirty-five pieces, including marches 
by brass bands, serious and comic songs, quartets, 
choruses, violin and piano solos, with perhaps a reci- 

tation or two to make a little variety. These " levy" 
concerts were given at a period when times were hard 
and money was not very plenty, and people were dis- 
posed to economy. They were cheap and attractive, 
because they were generally well conducted. The pro- 
fessional performers were persons of experience, the 
amateurs who were singers usually possessed good 
natural voices and knew something about music, and 
the instrumental performers were quite respectable in 
their efforts. 

After a struggle of about six years the Philadel- 
phia Museum was unable to maintain itself longer. 
The fine collection of objects of natural history, the 
largest in the country, was sold and dispersed. Bar- 
num secured a portion of them for his collection in 
New York and for his museum in Philadelphia. 
Other curiosities went to Baltimore, Boston, and other 
cities. An effort was made to continue the better 
portions of the Peale collection in the old Masonic 
Hall in Chestnut Street, and to exhibit such curiosi- 
ties as had been saved in connection with theatrical 
performances. The Academy of Fine Arts, or Peale's 
Museum Theatre, was opened by John Sefton & Co. 
in August, 1846, and closed in July, 1847. 

The whole building at Ninth and Sansom Streets 
now became devoted to public use. The lecture-room, 
something like that in a medical college, the lecturer 
standing on a platform below the spectators, they 
seated in rising benches up to the ceiling, was occu- 
pied for many purposes. The genial Signor Antonio 
Blitz, magician and ventriloquist, popular with old 
and youDg, held the place for his winter exhibitions 
for many years. Other performers of various kinds, 
elocutionists, vocalists, musicians, orators, and lec- 
turers, on week-days, alternated on Sundays with cler- 
gymen and religious congregations. The well-known 
Francis Fauvel Gouraud attempted here to teach some 
hundred ladies and gentlemen " the art of memory," 
and failed, as many of them declared, miserably. 
Monster balls on behalf of the Catholic benevolent 
institutions on St. Patrick's Day, with a few after-dem- 
onstrations, closed out the season of gayety which com- 
menced about the beginning of November, and led 
off about that time with the grand fancy costume ball 
of the Maennerchor, succeeded by balls under the 
auspices of fire companies, military companies, and 
other organizations. All the great public meetings 
came to be held as matter of course in the Chinese 
Museum, which was the popular, but not accurate, 
name given to the whole building. The Franklin 
Institute held its annual exhibitions there, occupying 
both rooms and making a temporary apartment for 
the display of stoves, grates, and machinery out of 
the alley on the north, which being floored and 
boarded over with a temporary roof made a long, 
narrow gallery. The Horticultural Society held its 
annual floral shows in September and October. Po- 
litical meetings by all parties were held in the first 
and second stories. 



It was estimated that from three to four thousand 
persons could find standing-room in the Chinese 
Museum apartment. The upper story, upon floor and 
gallery, had room for five or six thousand. There 
were frequently held important conventions and con- 
gresses. In 1847 the Whig national convention met 
there and nominated Zachary Taylor and Millard 
Fillmore for President and Vice-President of the 
United States. The grand banquet by citizens of 
Philadelphia to the returned volunteers from Mexico 
took place in the museum room, July 24, 1848. The 
celebration of the arrival of the " City of Glasgow" 
steamship, a fine affair, took place there Jan. 11, 
1851. The last grand occasion upon which this build- 
ing was employed was the great consolidation ball 
and banquet, March 11, 1854. In less than four 
months after this time the building was in ashes, the 
flames having been communicated from the National 
Theatre immediately north of it, which took place 
July 5, 1854. Isaac Brown Parker, the original owner 
of the ground, as well as that north of it, occupied 
by the theatre, had become repossessed by sheriff 
sales upon his mortgages. He held the vacant lots 
for some years, and sold them finally to the Butler 
House Hotel Company, which erected a grand build- 
ing, extending on Ninth from Chestnut Street to 
Sansom, along Chestnut to the full width of the Na- 
tional Theatre lot, along Sansom to the extreme east 
boundary of the museum property, which they fin- 
ished and opened for guests for the first time on the 
13th of February, 1860, and called the building the 
Continental Hotel. 

Daniel Bowen came to Philadelphia in 1790, and 
opened a wax-work exhibition and museum of paint- 
ings and curiosities. In 1795 he took his collection 
to Boston, where it became the foundation of the 
Columbian Museum. He gave as one of his reasons 
for this removal " a desire to avoid a continued com- 
petition with my particular friend Charles W. Peale, 
a distinguished artist of Philadelphia." Bowen's 
Boston Museum was burned twice. After the second 
disaster, about the year 1810, he came back to Phila- 
delphia, where he resided until his death, in 1856, at 
the extreme age of ninety-six years. He was a native 
of Massachusetts, and had served in the privateer 
" Providence" during the Revolution. While on 
board of that vessel he was taken prisoner and carried 
to England, where he was confined for some time in 
a prison. 

A shameless exhibition was announced on the 21st 
November, 1794, in the following curious advertise- 

Pi LENGTH, Corner of Second and Callowhill Streets, at the sign 

of the Black Bear. 
"The late king of France, together with his queen taking her last 

farewell of him in the temple the day preceding hia execution. The 

whole is a striking likeness, in full stature, and dressed as they were at 

the time. 
" The king is represented as standing, his queen on her knees by his 

right side, overwhelmed with sorrow and ready to faint, the king look- 
ing tenderly at her. 

" Second is the scaffold on which he was executed, whereupon the 
king stands in full view of the guillotine. Before him is a priest on his 
knees, with a crucifix in one hand and a prayer-book in the other. On 
the aide of the guillotine Btands the executioner, prepared to do his 

"When the last signal is given, the priest rises on his feet, the king 
lays himself on the block, where he is secured. The executioner then 
turns and prepares to do his duty, and, when the second signal is given, 
the executioner drops the knife and severs the head from the body in 
one second. The head falls in a basket, and the lips, which are first red, 
turn blue. The whole is performed to the life, by an invisible machine, 
without any perceptible assistance. 

" Made by the first Italian artist, of the name of Columba. The work- 
manship has been admired by the most professed judges wherever it has 
been seen. 

" * + * The proprietors humbly hope for the encouragement of the pub- 
lic, as nothing Bhall be wanting on their part to render the exhibition 
pleasing and satisfactory to their patrons. 

" Price, three shillings. Children half-price. To be seen from nine 
in the morning till nine at night." 

It was in reference to this exhibition that Cobbett 
wrote this very proper rebuke : 

" The queen of France, the calumniated Antoinette, was the first for- 
eigner, except some generous Englishmen, that advanced a shilling in 
the American cause. Have I ever abused her memory ? It was not I 
— though it was an Englishman — that cut off her head, and besprinkled 
her garments with blood, on a sign hung over the public road. It was 
not I that guillotined her husband, in an^automaton, every day, from 
nine in the morning till nine at night, for the diversion of the citizens 
of Philadelphia." 

A museum, which for many years enjoyed a high 
degree of popularity, was opened, in 1807, at No. 48 
Market Street, by Jesse Sharpless. As his collection 
increased, he advertised extensively, giving a list of 
the principal wax figures and curiosities on exhibi- 
tion. This list, in 1813, comprised forty-seven items. 1 

1 Advertisement of 1813 : 



"at the White House, Market Street, opposite the west end of the Jersey 
" Market. 

" This museum has been improved and considerably increased by the 
addition of a number of new figures, paintings, etc. A handsome organ, 
likewise a complete electrical machine, with extensive philosophical 
apparatus, has been added to the collection. 

" 1. Baron Trenck, loaded with sixty-eight pounds of iron, in the dun- 
geon of Magdeburg. 

" 2. His Excellency James Madison, President of the United StateB. 

" 3. Napoleon Bonaparte, Emperor of France. 

"4. Ferdinand VII., King of Spain. 

"6. The present Pope of Rome. 

" 6. Goliath of Gath, and David, armed with a sling and atone. 

"7. Columbus, the diBcoverer of America. 

" 8. The Connecticut and Boston Beauties. 

"9. The Methodist Beauty. 

"10. General Braddock, who fell near Pittsburgh. 

"11. Mi6s Paine. 

" 12. The infant Moses, as discovered by Pharaoh's daughter. 

"13. The immortal Washington, the Father of his Country, in full 
uniform, crowned with flowerB by two female figures representing Lib- 
erty and Fame. 

" 14. The Lion between the feet of Washington. 

" 15. A figure showing the muscles, etc., of the human body. 

" 16. THe head of John the Baptist on a charger. 

"17. Admiral Viscount Nelson, who fell at Trafalgar, attended by Ms 
first lieutenant and surgeon. 

"18. A painting representing the good Samaritan. A oalf with two 
heads, six legs, and two tails. 



In 1816 the enterprising proprietor exhibited the 
picture, by Boudet, of the death of Maj.-Gen. Boss, 
" who fell in the attack on Baltimore, the 12th of last 

"19. Othello stabbing Desdemona,— taken from Shakspeare. 
"20. The Goddess of Love, with two doves. 

"21. An elegant Chinese Fagoda, with two handsome Chinese ladies. 
"22. A group representing Hercules tempted by Virtue and Vice. 
"23. A box showing in perspective the principal buildingB and cities. 
"24. Joseph Bonaparte, King of Spain. 
"25. His Majesty George III., present King of England. 
" 26. Dr. Lamb and the Philadelphia Beauty, 
"27. The Little Beauty and her Sleeping Sister. 
"28. General Porter, supported by his waiter. The Indian throwing 
his tomahawk. 

"29. Four Paintings, namely: Mount Vesuvius, Battle of Trafalgar, 
the Burning of the ' Philadelphia 1 frigate, and Columbus 1 First Landing 
in America. 

" 30. In the second room, on the left hand, stand the different State 
Beauties, with the colors. 
"31. The Funeral of Admiral Nelson, surrounded by Soldiers. 
"32. The Jovial Dutchmen over their glasses and cards. 
" 33. A Beggar and the Generous Little Boy. 

" 34. His Excellency President Washington and the venerable Benja- 
min Franklin. 
"35. "William Penn, founder and first Governor of Pennsylvania. 
"36. Mrs. Newlin, with her six children at one birth. 
"37. An Automaton Tumbler. 
"38. The Philosophers, dressed in black. 
" 39. The Temple of the Invisible Lady. 

"40. O'Brien McCool, the Irish Giant, weighing seven hundred 

" 41. A son of Hibernia, fourteen years old, and six feet four inches 
in height. 
"42. Madame Bonaparte, consort of Napoleon. 
"43. A correct likeness of the philosopher Richard Folwell. 


" the four naval victories of 


" on transparent canvaB. 

"From the great number of persons who have frequented this 
museum, and their repeated marks of approbation, the proprietor flat- 
ters himself that the improvements made, and still making, will give 
general satisfaction. 

"The museum is open from 8 o'clock in the morning till 10 o'clock in 
the evening. 

" Admission, 25 cents. Children, 12% cents. 

"Profiles taken and framed." 

Advertisement of 1816: 



"in the large, new brick building in Market Street, third door below 
Second Street. 
"The late addition in 


"added to the former, makes a large collection,— such as the proprietor 
flatterB himself will both satisfy and gratify the visitors. There are 
nine different rooms, which contain the different articles. 


" Boom No. 5 contains the group of General Moreau, who joined the 
Emperor of BuBsia against Bonaparte, after he was so dreadfully 
wounded by a cannon-ball, and in the act of being borne off the field of 
battle by two grenadiers. He is dressed in the uniform of a PruBBian 
General. His thigh-bone is plainly to be seen, together with the artery 
crurales; his countenance exhibiting the pallid hue of death, the 
wound representing the natural appearance; his favorite aide-de-camp, 
Baron Koreakow, deploring the misfortune of his general. A soldier 
weltering in his blood, his head shattered by a cannon-ball, which ex- 
poses to view the internal part of the head lacerated. All of which are 
executed with the greatest anatomical precision. Also, the group of 
General Packenham (who fell at New Orleans, in the engagement with 
General Jackson), after he was so dreadfully wounded by a cannon-ball, 

In the summer of 1818 there was added to the 
museum, "The Birth of Christ, with a group, and a 
picturesque view of the city of Bethlehem, exhibit- 
ing two hundred statues. The Battle of Waterloo 
brings to the view of the spectator several thousand 
men in arms." The elephant Columbus was exhib- 
ited in 1819. This animal was eight feet high, and 
weighed between four thousand and five thousand 
pounds. In the winter of the succeeding year, when 
he was brought back to the museum, he had grown 
to be nine feet high, and he weighed six thousand 

In 1820 the museum contained three hundred wax 
statues, two hundred paintings, three hundred en- 
gravings, and many valuable curiosities. In May, 
1821, was added a representation of the duel between 
Commodores Decatur and Barron, attended by their 
seconds, Commodores Bainbridge and Elliott. In 
May, 1822, the following living curiosities were ex- 
hibited : " Shuwiskanna, an Indian chief, twenty 
years of age, double-jointed, and only thirty inches 
high ; sits in a bowl, and moves himself about with 
the aid of two sticks. Also a black man turned white ; 
born in Virginia ; aged sixty years. Some parts of 
his body are spotted like a leopard." 

Mr. Adrian, professor of philosophic legerdemain, 
gave exhibitions at the museum in the early part of 
the year 1824. 

There was a camera obscura fixed on the roof of the 
museum, which in clear and fine weather furnished 
attractive views of the active life at the court-house 
just west of it, at the fish-market, at the wharves, and 
in the busy street below. 

The magic lantern was, at all times, a popular 
exhibition with the younger visitors at the museum. 

and supported by one of the infantry. The ball passed through the 
front of his stomach. Tbe wound being large, his entrails are exposed 
to view, which enables the beholder to judge the horrid effects of war; 
surrounded with a number of British officers and soldiers, struck with 
horror, and surprised at the loss of their general. And Fairbanks, who 
destroyed Miss Fails, and who was executed for it. 

"Room No. 6 contains nearly one hundred paintings, fifteen of which 
contain nearly one hundred feet of canvas each, and many of them are 
&b interesting as any paintings in America. They represent battles, 
treaties, landscapes, etc. 

" And from the summit of tbe building there is one of the hand- 
somest panoramic views in Philadelphia. 

" Room No. 7 contains ten different pieces of anatomical preparations 
in wax, executed in the firBt style, which will be found worthy the at- 
tention of medical gentlemen and connoisseurs. Also a number of 
handsome paintings, — 

"1. Wertmuller's VenuB. 

"2. Otis 1 Bathing Figures. 

"3. Wertmuller's Wood Fawn. 

"4. Bodet'B Bathing Figures. 

"5. The Handsome Danee. 
*' And about fifty statues from France. This room is 26 cents extra. 

" Profiles taken and handsomely framed. 

" Tbe museum is handsomely Illuminated every evening, -with appro- 
priate music, and only 26 cents ; children, 12% cents." 

Additions announced in 1820: Samson and Delilah, the Albinos, 
Charlotte Temple and Montroville, the Invisible Lady, Erasmus, Friar 
Bacon, Baron Swedenborg, and several French, English, and American 



We have given, at some length, the history of the 
oldest and principal museums, which for many years 
were popular places of amusement. Of minor shows, 
of various descriptions, exhibited for a short time 
only, there was a goodly number, especially during 
the earlier part of the present century. The itinerant 
showman has lost his importance in this age of rail- 
roads and vast combinations; if he exists, he is 
found attached to some mammoth show, which, under 
the name of "circus," offers to the public a hundred 
different amusements combined. Of these early 
caterers for the amusement of the good people of 
Philadelphia, some have been incidentally mentioned 
in our chapter on Manners and Customs. We shall 
give, hereafter, a brief record of their transient visits, 
but we wish first to say something of that favorite of 
all Americans, young and old, — the circus. 

The first permanent circus and manige created in 
Philadelphia was built in 1785, on Market Street, 
near the Centre House, by Mr. Poole, who claimed 
that he was "the first American who ever exhibited 
feats of equestrianism on the continent." Poole could 
perform various dexterous feats while riding two 
horses at full speed, — something too common now to 
attract notice, but which was deemed a wonderful act 
of horsemanship at that time. He had also some 
well-trained trick horses. He kept his circus open 
for a little over a year. In 1787, the equestrian Bates, 
who had performed in Philadelphia during a transient 
visit in 1772, came back and rented Poole's building, 
where he opened a riding-school. 

Another equestrian, the Scotchman, John Bill Rick- 
etts, who was a pupil of Hughes, of the Blackfriars' 
Bridge Circus, London, came to Philadelphia in 1792, 
and erected a building for a riding-school at the 
southwest corner of Twelfth and Market Streets. 
His success as a riding-master was such that he ven- 
tured to pull down the house and erect a larger one 
fitted up as a circus. This was opened for equestrian 
performances by daylight on the afternoon of April 
12, 1793. The price of admission to boxes was 7s. M., 
to pit, 38. 9d. Seven hundred persons were all that 
could by any possibility be crowded into the estab- 
lishment, and at the inaugural performance the house 
was full. Ricketts astonished the audience by riding 
upon two horses at the same time at full gallop. 
Master Ricketts and Master Strobel assisted him. 
The company was strengthened by the arrival of Sig- 
nor Spinacuta, a dancer on the tight-rope, Mr. Mc- 
Donald, an equestrian and clown, and others. Gen. 
Washington assisted in rendering this circus fashion- 
able by attending a performance on Saturday, April 
22, 1793. If Ricketts' venture proved profitable, he 
certainly showed himself worthy of the liberal pat- 
ronage of the Philadelphians, for, during the season 
of 1794, he gave benefits for a fuel fund for the dis- 
tressed poor of the city, the income of which is still 
used for that purpose. He also gave a benefit for the 
French exiles driven out of Hispaniola. 

The building at Twelfth and Market Streets could 
no longer accommodate all who sought admission to 
the popular spectacle, and Ricketts concluded to build 
another circus, where, in addition to the larger seating 
capacity, he could give evening performances. He 
built an amphitheatre at the corner of Sixth and 
Chestnut Streets, which was opened to the public on 
the 19th of October, 1795. The building was of a 
circular form, and was ninety-seven feet in diameter. 
The roof rose from the outer walls, which were 
eighteen feet high, in the shape of a cone fifty feet 
high, which was decorated at the top with a figure of 
a flying Mercury. The centre of the dome, in the 
interior, was decorated with a blazing star, from 
which was suspended a chandelier having a number of 
lights. There was a handsome portico on the Chest- 
nut Street front, which was the principal entrance, 
and from whence a lobby ran round to what were 
called the music or proscenium boxes. The stage 
was at the south end of the building, and was large 
enough for dramatic performances. The centre of 
the building was appropriated to the ring, and the 
boxes ran round this circle in the shape of a horse- 
shoe, rising up to eight or nine rows of benches, 
which were divided into boxes and pit. The house 
had accommodations for twelve hundred or fourteen 
hundred persons. A coffee-room communicated with 
these portions of the house. "Patent" lights were 
placed on the pillars, and the building, in its decora- 
tions and fixtures, was justly considered the finest 
amphitheatre in America. John Bill Ricketts, his 
son Francis, and Sully were the principal equestrians. 
Signor Reano, a slack-rope dancer, and soon there- 
after, Spinacuta, a tight-rope dancer, and his wife, 
who rode two horses at full speed, added to the attrac- 
tions of the place. The trained horse, Cornplanter, 
could jump over another horse fourteen hands high. 
Ricketts performed the dangerous feat of riding two 
horses, each foot placed upon a quart-mug, set loosely 
upon the saddle. Francis Ricketts rode on his head, 
balancing himself on a pint-pot, and, while blind- 
folded, dismounted from his horse, going at full 
speed, picked up a watch, and mounted again. 
During the seven months' season that year several 
pantomimes were brought out with excellent success. 

Ricketts' Art Pantheon and Amphitheatre, as it 
was called, enjoyed' its well-deserved popularity for 
some years, but an accident destroyed in a few hours 
the work of many years. The building was burned 
down on the 17th of December, 1799, and Ricketts 
was totally ruined. The fire originated in a building 
adjoining the amphitheatre, and which was used for 
storing scenery and other property. The roof caught 
fire, and the flames spread rapidly. In the circus a 
large audience had assembled ; the usual equestrian 
performances were over, and the actors were dressing 
for their parts in the pantomime of " Don Juan," 
when the terrible cry of "Fire!" was heard, and 
tongues of flame were seen leaping out from the base 



of the dome over the actors' entrance. The terrified 
audience evacuated the building in haste and confu- 
sion, but, happily, without injury. In a short time 
the whole dome was in a blaze, and all hopes of saving 
the building were given up. The adjoining building, 
a fine structure originally erected for the Episcopal 
Academy, but then occupied by James Oeller's hotel, 
was totally destroyed by the flames, and considerable 
damage was done to a row of new houses extending 
to Sansom Street. It was the biggest fire that had 
ever happened in the city. Ricketts' loss was esti- 
mated at twenty thousand dollars, — a large sum for 
the time. The unfortunate manager supposed that 
the building had been set on fire willfully, and he of- 
fered a reward of one thousand dollars for the appre- 
hension of the incendiary; but, upon investigation, it 
was ascertained that the disaster was due to the cul- 
pable negligence of a drunken stage carpenter, who, 
having had occasion to go into the loft, left his lighted 
candle behind when he came down. 

Before these facts were ascertained, some bigoted 
people saw in the destruction of the circus a judgment 
of Providence. The last scene of the pantomime 
they considered impious. It was described in the 
bills as follows : " The last scene presents the infernal 
regions, with a view of the mouth of hell ; Don Juan 
being reduced by his wickedness to the dreadful ne- 
cessity of leaping headlong into the gaping gulf, in a 
shower of fire, among the furies, who receive him on 
the points of their burning spears, and hurl him at 
once into the bottomless pit." 

It was said that the fire arose in the attempt to de- 
pict the flames of hell, and those saintly people came 
to the logical conclusion that the destruction of the 
circus was a judgment. Unfortunately for the moral 
effect of their reasoning, it was shown that the pan- 
tomime had not even commenced, and the flames, 
lighted by a drunken man's carelessness, had come 
from the roof, not from the pit. 

Ricketts attempted to retrieve his losses, in part at 
least, by giving day performances in the rival estab- 
lishment of Monsieur Lailson, whom he found kindly 
disposed to help him in his misfortune; but poor 
Ricketts was broken in spirit as well as in fortune, he 
soon gave up struggling against an adverse fate, and 
returned to England. 

Lailson in 1797 had erected a splendid amphithe- 
atre at the southwest corner of Fifth and Prune 
Streets, which extended as far west as the jail wall. 
He opened his establishment on the 8th of April, in 
that year, with equestrian exercises and the panto- 
mime of "Les QuatreFils Aymon; or, the Four 
Valiant Brothers," from the old French historic 
legend of that name. The equestrian performers 
were Monsieur Lailson, Langley, Sully, Herman, 
McDonald, C. Vandervelde, Reano, and Miss Vanice. 
The pantomimists were Pouble, Jaymon, Douvilliers, 
Poignard, Viellard, St. March, Leger, Savoil, Madame 
Douvilliers, Mrs. Rowson (a different lady from Mrs. 

Rowson the actress and author of " Charlotte Tem- 
ple"), Mrs. Devan, and Mademoiselle Lailson. The 
company also performed French comedies and operas, 
in which Miss Sophie and Miss Tesseire appeared. 

There were then in the city, operating at the same 
time, two theatres and two circuses, besides numer- 
ous minor exhibitions. The evidently increasing 
taste of the people for such amusements gave much 
concern to those who still clung to the simple ways 
and healthy pleasures of an earlier period. The 
Friends, particularly, were shocked at this frivolous 
tendency of the times, and they addressed a memo- 
rial to the mayor and Council protesting against the 
continuation of those exhibitions. Whether the 
moral effect of this opposition was to deter many from 
continuing to patronize the circus, — for the Council 
could take no action tending to close places of amuse- 
ment that were not disorderly, — or Lailson's expenses 
were too heavy, — his equestrian company being the 
largest that had ever visited the United States, and 
the dresses and paraphernalia were gotten up on a 
scale of unusual magnificence, — his enterprise had a 
ruinous ending. In June, 1798, a short time after 
commencing his second season, he became bankrupt. 
His company was broken up, and his horses' and 
stage-properties were sold. The greater portion of 
the latter was purchased by Wignell & Reinagle for 
the Chestnut Street Theatre Company. A month 
later — the building being unoccupied — the immense 
dome partially forced out the walls and fell in with a 
fearful crash, putting an end to the history of Lail- 
son's Amphitheatre but not to the building, a portion 
of which was repaired and roofed and used for vari- 
ous purposes. 

The burning of Ricketts' Circus, following the fall- 
ing in of the dome of Lailson's Circus, put an end to 
regular equestrian performances for some time. In 
1802, Thomas Swann, riding-master and farrier, had 
a riding-house in Southwark, adjoining the South 
Street Theatre, where, besides teaching his art, he 
gave some public exhibitions of horsemanship. In 
January, 1803, he invited the public to attend a lec- 
ture on the horse, in the old Lailson Circus building, 
on which occasion he proposed to " cause to be de- 
stroyed and dissected" a particularly lame horse. At 
the same time a real skeleton of a horse would be pre- 
sented, and the lecturer would demonstrate the pro- 
gress of the disease known as " hipshot," from which 
the animal to be slaughtered suffered. A little later, 
in the same year, Swann opened an amphitheatre and 
circus at the corner of Thirteenth and Market Streets. 
A lecture by the manager, equestrian performances, 
vocal and instrumental music, manoeuvres of "the 
new exercise of the broadsword for cavalry move- 
ments, together with readings and recitations by a 
young gentleman lately from Europe," were the at- 
tractions offered on the opening night. The per- 
former of broadsword exercise was a Mrs. Scott. 
She took her benefit at this amphitheatre on the 13th 



of October. On that occasion she returned "her sin- 
cere thanks to those gentlemen of the City Troop, and 
others, who were present at her second essay of the 
broadsword exercise, for their- approbation of her 
performance, and solicits their patronage for this 
night of her benefit." On that occasion Mrs. Scott 
exemplified "the six divisions of the broadsword 
exercise for cavalry movements, in which is exhibited 
ninety-three motions." 

Swann occupied this amphitheatre until 1810, when 
he went to the amphitheatre erected by Monsieur 
Victorien, in 1808, at the Centre-House Gardens. 
Victorien gave performances on the tight- and slack- 
rope and wire, with ground and lofty tumbling. He 
did not remain long here. In 1810, Monsieur Pout- 
ingam opened a riding-school at the corner of Tenth 
and Arch Streets. At the end of one year, his 
enterprise not having been successful, Poutingam 
gave up the establishment. It was rented by Swann, 
who kept it until his death, in July, 1812. 

The " New Circus," at the northeast corner of 
Walnut and Ninth Streets, was opened in 1809, by 
Pepin & Breschard. Victor Pepin was a native of 
Philadelphia, descended from one of the French 
Neutrals which had been brought to this city from 
Acadia before the Revolutionary war. Breschard 
was a Frenchman. The building was very large, 
and all the arrangements perfect. The dome was 
estimated to be eighty feet in height over the ring. 
The circus company, which had come from Spain 
upon the invitation of Don Leonis, Spanish consul 
for Philadelphia, was splendid. They performed to 
fine houses, with unabated success, during two seasons, 
after which they traveled on an extensive circuit, 
while alterations were being made to fit up the new 
circus for theatrical performances. Breschard was 
excellent in pantomime. Of Pepin, a writer quoted 
by Clapp in his " History of the Boston Stage," 
sayH, — 

" Whether on foot or on horseback, he showed the port of a king. No 
Pepin of France that ever rode into Paris with his doughty Austrasians 
could have claimed greater homage than our martial equestrian as he 
brought up the rear of his glittering troops, — he himself in the costume 
of a Gallic field-marshal. Pepin differed, however, from his royal pre- 
cursors in one great respect, — he had rather more brains; and both in 
ruling his State and in staving off revolutions, he showed a firmness 
and a skill that grander heads might have copied. " 

Returning to the minor shows of a miscellaneous 
character, we note, in 1800, "An exhibition of a 
Happy family, in a neat and warm room, formerly a 
Freemason's hall, at No. 61 Walnut Street, near the 
City Tavern." The " Invisible Woman," exhibited 
"in the house lately occupied by the Secretary of 
State, at No. 18 South Fifth Street. "A pygarg 
from Russia," exhibited at the Black-Horse Tavern, 
Market Street. " It has the likeness of the camel, 
bear, mule, goat, and the common bullock, and 
weighs eleven hundred-weight," said the advertise- 
ment, which went on to explain that this animal is 
spoken of in the book of Deuteronomy, chapter xiv., 

and was eaten by the ancients. " A white negro boy, 
born in South Carolina," at Mrs. Beatty's, No. 127 
Water Street, at the sign of the Liberty Tree. An 
ostrich, "eleven feet high," lately imported from 
Africa, shown by Secondo Bosio, at No. 144 Cedar 
Street, at the sign of the Two Brother Sailors. 

A wax-work show of fifty figures was opened in 
1801, by Moulthrop & Street, at No. 100 North Sec- 
ond Street. Among the effigies were those of Frank- 
lin, John Adams, Jefferson, and Washington, — the 
latter being represented on his death-bed. In August 
of the same year, — rather a warm month for such an 
exhibition, — Mr. Wooley notified the public that he 
would eat fire and walk on red-hot iron with his 
naked feet, at the sign of the Castle and Grapes, on 
Fifth Street. A cassowary, "the giant of the feathered 
tribe, five feet high," could be seen at No. 308 South 
Front Street, while the " Learned Pig" astonished 
the visitors at the Rising Sun Hotel, Market Street, 
by telling the time of day, distinguishing colors, 
counting the company present, etc. When, in 1803, 
one of these educated gruuters was on exhibition at 
the Centre House, the Aurora made the remark that 
" within four years four learned pigs have been ex- 
hibited." A model of Jerusalem and the Temple of 
Solomon, of the dimensions of sixteen by nine feet, 
could be seen at Patrick Kennedy's, No. 87 South 
Second Street, and at No. 112 Race Street there was 
exhibited " curious musical machinery in the shape of 
a clock, which of itself performs several airs upon the 
flute, and presents to view an automaton young lady 
seated at a piano-forte, performing on that instru- 

A visitor who astonished and delighted the Phila- 
delphians in 1802 was John Ranie, professor of leger- 
demain and ventriloquism. The professor was a pres- 
tidigitateur, a mind-reader, and a ventriloquist, and 
the wonderful feats which he announced in his lengthy 
advertisements and faithfully performed were equal 
to anything that has since been attempted by our 
most famous modern wizards. His extraordinary 
success during a stay of several months justified his 
coming back the following year, when he gave per- 
formances at the Assembly-room, adjoining the new 
theatre. He was again in Philadelphia in 1810, and 
exhibited at the City Assembly room, in counection 
with Charles Ranie, or Rannie. 

Bartholomew Corsa & Co., in July, 1804, exhibited 
a collection of waxen figures " formed from the orig- 
inals," " of the same complexion, stature, dress, etc., 
of the personages whom they represent." There were 
twenty-six figures in this exhibition. In September 
there were thirty-four. The collection, which about 
this time had been removed from 106 Walnut Street, 
where first exhibited, to Dr. Franklin's mansion, in 
Franklin Court, was purchased by John Baptiste 
Justice & Co. 

At the Red Lion, Market Street, an African lion of 
large size was exhibited. But soon thereafter a rival 



beast was announced at Swann's riding-school : " The 
largest African lion that ever was seen in this city let 
out of his cage in a part of the school perfectly se- 
cure from the spectators, opposite Lombardy Gar- 
dens." A dancing horse was another attraction at 

Another Invisible Lady, " direct from Spain," in- 
vited the people to Vogdes' Assembly-room, while 
Mr. Smith, lately from Europe, announced " freaks of 
philosophy, ventriloquism, astronomy," etc., at Ques- 
net's ball-room, but many preferred to go and see the 
whale that had been caught in the Delaware. It was 
dead, and was kept on exhibition as long as the curi- 
ous could endure the stench arising from its decayed 
flesh. During the exhibition an arm-chair was placed 
in the capacious mouth of the monster, and it was 
considered a distinction to have occupied that seat 
for a few minutes. The bold adventurers who claimed 
this honor were never tempted to venture, Jonah-like, 
within the cavernous depths of the whale's throat. 
A series of exhibitions of animals followed. Two 
live porpoises, one nine feet and the other six feet 
long, were exhibited at the Black Horse Tavern in 
1805, an elephant at the George in 1806. The fol- 
lowing year the learned African horse Spotee, which 
had a tail like an elephant, was exhibited at the 
Black Horse. This wonderful animal was represented 
to have a knowledge of arithmetic, and could add, 
subtract, and divide, tell the number of buttons on a 
coat, etc. At the same tavern there were exhibited 
that year two royal tigers from Surat, in Asia, and a 
living sea-dog, taken in the Delaware River, near 
Trenton. A live panther was shown at the sign of 
the Sorrel Horse, and in 1809 an exhibition of mon- 
keys that " danced on the tight-rope" was advertised 
at the Shepherdess Tavern, on Moyamensing road. 

In the latter part of 1805, Christopher Winckel- 
back, " director of the Hall of the Liberal and Me- 
chanic Art Society at Basle, in Switzerland," brought 
to the city his optic glass, with views in Switzerland, 
original paintings, prints, drafts, images of alabaster, 
and a variety of machines of his own invention, 
among which were several water-works, etc. ; and in 
1807, J. H. Rauchner exhibited at No. 100 Chestnut 
Street some wax-work figures, prints and paintings. 
He also informed the public that " there is also a 
grand hand-organ for the use of visitors." 

John Scudder, in the summer of 1808, exhibited at 
Auriol's ball-room, No. 64 South Fourth Street, a 
grand panorama of historical paintings, representing 
"The Battle of Bunker's Hill," "The Bombardment 
of Tripoli," " The Burning of the Frigate ' Philadel- 
phia' in the Harbor of Tripoli," " View of the Sports 
of India," and " A Correct Likeness of Brook Wat- 
son, Esq., whose leg was bitten off by a shark while 
he was bathing in the water at Havana, notwith- 
standing which he recovered, and lived to be chosen 
Lord Mayor of London." 

" An astonishing female artist" was on exhibition 

in the year 1809, at the Shakespeare Hotel, corner 
of Chestnut and Sixth Streets. This unfortunate 
creature, otherwise as perfectly formed as any woman, 
was born without any arms or legs, and it was an- 
nounced that "Nature has deprived this young lady 
of the use of all her limbs, to make amends as it 
were in. the exercise of other faculties surpassing all 
human belief. She will paint elegant flowers and 
landscapes, mix colors, write, thread a needle, cut 
cloth or paper with the scissors held in her mouth, 
etc., etc." 

This lady was Miss Sarah Rogers, the wonder of 
the time. Respectable and poor, she had no other 
means of livelihood than the exhibition of herself 
and her extraordinary performances, a means repug- 
nant to the modest female mind. She accepted this 
hard necessity with courage, and succeeded in earning 
a comfortable support, while enlisting the sympathy 
of all who saw her. 

A " Moving Panorama, with a large number of 
people at their trades and in proper motion," was ex- 
hibited at Cook's building, South Third Street, shortly 

" The American Dwarf, two feet eight inches high, 
and fifteen years old," was exhibited in full regi- 
mentals at Barnum's Shakespeare Hotel, northwest 
corner of Sixth and Chestnut Streets, in the latter 
part of the year. 

A " New Museum" exhibited in 1809, at No. 136 
Market Street, a " sea-tiger from Greenland," and a 
" living leopard." In 1811 the " Historical Gallery," 
at the corner of Seventh and Chestnut Streets, had as 
its principal wax figures " The Arrestation of Robes- 
pierre," "The Celebrated Charlotte Corday," and 
" The Execution of Louis XVI." In the same year 
Lewis Chiappi, proprietor of the Roman Museum, 
No. 135J Market Street, had on exhibition among 
other curiosities a wax figure of " Dicky" Folwell, 
printer, a well-known local character, already men- 
tioned in another chapter of this history. Chiappi 
had also figures in wax of Washington and Lord 

Dawson & Pardee, at the northwest corner of Sev- 
enth and Chestnut Streets, exhibited in January, 
1811, "a band of elegant musicians, in wax-work, all 
of which will chime a number of tunes in unison, and 
accompanied by an elegant organ." 

Zerah Colburn, the astonishing Vermont calculator, 
six years old, was exhibited in March at various 
places, — at Peale's Model Room, on Fifth Street, op- 
posite the City Library; at No. 96 South Second 
Street, and at the Merchants' Coffee-House. This 
unfortunate child's strange gift — he could solve 
readily complicated problems in arithmetic which 
would have cost the best accountants a considerable 
expenditure of time and thought — was exhibited by 
his father for the avowed purpose of raising a fund 
for his education. The elder Colburn did, in fact, 
take him to England, and put him to school there, 



but he took him away before he was sixteen years 
old. Young Colburn's mathematical powers left him 
when he reached manhood. He tried various profes- 
sions, and became in time an actor, a teacher, a Meth- 
odist preacher, and a professor of languages and litera- 
ture. He died at the early age of thirty-five years. 

In February of the same year Miss Harvey, " the 
beautiful Albiness, the most astonishing phenomenon 
ever known," was exhibited at Earle's gallery. She 
was an Englishwoman by birth. The color of her 
eyes was said to be " a delicate red." Charles Wil- 
son Peale, then in his seventy-seventh year, painted 
her portrait. Miss Harvey was subsequently married 
at Charleston, S. C. She died in Havana in 1820. 

During the spring Maffei exhibited at Washington 
Hall a puppet-show under the high-sounding title of 
" A Picturesque and Metamorphosis Theatre." The 
figures in this show were two feet high. Stanislaus 
Surin, afterward manager of Tivoli Garden, gave 
" philosophical experiments," in which he brought 
science to assist in his legerdemain tricks. East 
India jugglers exhibited the same year at Masonic 
Temple, and " a great natural curiosity, a living 
elephant," was to be seen in Arch Street. 

At the beginning of the year 1813, D. Bowen and 
J. Kidder brought from Boston the Phoenix Museum, 
which they exhibited at the Shakspeare Rooms. The 
collection consisted principally of what were called 
panoramic views. Among them was " a correct rep- 
resentation of Market Street, from the old court-house 
to Centre Square." It was shown for a few months. 

In the same year the patriotic Philadelphians were 
invited to see a panorama of the naval engagement 
between the United States frigate " Constitution" and 
the British frigate " Guerriere." The sketches, it was 
said, had been taken under the direction of Capts. 
Hull and Morris, and " the relative situation of the 
ships may therefore be depended upon as being cor- 
rect." The same subject was illustrated at a mechan- 
ical theatre, on Lombard Street, designated as the 
"Amusement Pittoresque Mechanique ;" here the two 
vessels went through the manoeuvres of a naval fight, 
and the " Guerriere" was conquered by the " Consti- 
tution." These exhibitions commanded a good at- 

The Columbian Museum of Wax Statuary was 
opened at No. 130 Chestnut Street on the 1st of No- 
vember, 1813. There were wax statues of Washing- 
ton, Adams, Jefferson, Madison, Gen. Pike, Capts. 
Bainbridge, Decatur, and Hull, of the navy, and the 
emblematic representation of " The Tears of Colum- 
bia," representing a female figure weeping over the 
tomb of Capt. James Lawrence. This enterprise did 
not achieve sufficient success to warrant a long con- 

Minor shows continued to divide the attention of 
the sight-seers ; the most successful being those which 
exhibited wild and rare animals. 

Among the latter, the mammoth horse Columbus, 

which was exhibited in 1814, is worthy of mention. 
This magnificent animal was six years old, twenty 
hands high, and weighed two thousand seven hundred 
pounds. It was claimed to be "the largest horse 
ever produced in Europe or America." Columbus 
was bred in Pennsylvania. In November of the same 
year a whale nearly twenty-five feet long was caught 
in the Delaware, near Trenton, and was exhibited at 
Kensington. Dr. Lewis Chiappi, a skillful modeler 
in wax, made a model representation of this whale, 
with wax figures, the whole representing the way in 
which it was harpooned by Isaac Yard. John Smith, 
the dwarf, was exhibited at the same time. He had 
been reported to be dead, and he complained of the 
anonymous rival whose jealousy had thus stimulated 
him "to heap affliction upon bare eighteen inches of 
his fellow-man." A remarkable exhibition was made 
in 1813, by Mr. McKenzie, in Harmony Court, of a 
carriage " which runs by its own power in a large 

Day Francis, "the great juggler and magician," 
performed some wonderful feats at Masonic Hall, in 
1816. In 1817, Le Sieur Blanchard, " known by the 
celebrated appellation, multum in parvo, and the as- 
tonisher of the world," exhibited his skill in jugglery 
at Masonic Hall, proving himself a formidable rival 
to the " Sieur Breslau" and Potter, who were exhibit- 
ing at Washington Hall. Yet none of these worthies 
could compare with the East India magician, Sena 
Sam, who visited Philadelphia in 1818. His feats 
were truly wonderful. A " mammoth child" arrived 
from Europe, and was exhibited in 1819. This infant 
prodigy was five years old, three feet seven inches 
high, three feet five inches around the body, twenty- 
five inches around the thigh, fifteen inches around 
the calf of the leg, and it weighed one hundred and 
thirty pounds. 

In the same year the Mechanical Museum was 
opened at No. 202 South Front Street. There were 
some very curious mechanical figures in this collec- 
tion. At the end of the year James Griffith, who had 
been engaged at Peale's Museum, purchased the Me- 
chanical Museum. Among the curiosities which he 
added to the collection in 1820 were two self-moving 
machines, invented and constructed by Willard Fos- 
ter, of Vermont. In 1821, James Tilley gave some 
interesting exhibitions of fancy glass-blowing. His 
success was such as to justify his making periodical 
visits to the city for some years afterward. Exhibi- 
tions of nitrous oxide, or exhilarating gas, were given 
that year at Washington Hall. Among the novelties 
in 1821 were two Esquimaux, " a male and a female," 
together with a dog, " half wolf and half fox, from 
the coast of Labrador." They gave some exhibitions 
of their skill in guiding a canoe on the Delaware 
Kiver. J. L. Boqueta exhibited a mechanical theatre 
at the beginning of 1822. Four dogs acting as the 
motive-power of the machinery of a newly-invented 
grist-mill, which produced flour of a good quality, 



were shown at Bush Hill. But the great curiosity 
was the — 

"wonderful Leviathan, or Sea-Serpent, caught at Brown's Point, N. J. 
It was described as measuring thirty-two feet ten inches in length, and 
eighteen feet in circumference. Tliis monster of the deep has two legs, 
with a nail projecting out of the palm of each foot about the size of a 
man's thumb-nail. It hue two loug fins near the gills about fuur and a 
half feet long, and one large fin on the back' about four feet long. Its 
tail is forked, the upper part about five feet and the under part three 
feet long. In each of the jaws there are six rows of small white teeth. 
The mouth is a phenomenon in nature, and difficult to describe. It has 
no boues, no heart, no tongue, no brain ; but had a very large liver, 
which produced about four pounds of oil. It has five gills, each folding 
over the other. The skin is rough and of a leadish color, and is preserved 
in good order and complete shape. When taken it had about two bush- 
els of lamprey eels adhering to its sides." 

In 1823 more ventriloquism and legerdemain feats 
by Monsieur Perinor, physician and aeronaut, who 
also took portraits by a new process ; the '' celebrated 
picturesque theatre of Mr. Michael Muckle," exhibited 
by its new proprietor, Mr. Villivave; a handsome 
exhibition in Earle's gallery of a mechanical pano- 
rama representing an Italian village, with its inhabi- 
tants at their respective avocations, animals moving, 
etc. The figures were fifteen inches in height, and 
there were over one hundred of them in motion at the 
same time. This interesting piece of work continued 
attractive for several months. 

In January, 1824, "a menagerie of twenty-one 
living animals, much the largest and most valuable 
collection ever in America," was exhibited at No. 
272 Market Street. 

In April "'an Egyptian mummy, received from 
ancient Thebes, with its double sarcophagus, or coffin, 
curiously ornamented," was exhibited at Sully & 
Earle's gallery, opposite the State-House. It was re- 
ceived by the Boston Medical Society, and was ex- 
hibited for the benefit of the Massachusetts General 
Hospital. It was said to be the first mummy that had 
been brought to America. 

About the same time there was on exhibition at No. 
28 South Sixth Street "two ancient urns, or sarco- 
phagi, formerly used for containing the ashes of the 
deceased, according to the customs of those days, 
found in Rome, one hundred and fifty feet below the 
surface of the earth, in a vault.'' 

The Pennsylvania Museum was opened in this year 
in a new and spacious building No. 270 Market Street. 
The animals of a menagerie which had exhibited for 
some years previous occupied the lower floor and the 
yard. The upper stories were devoted to the display 
of curiosities, wax statuary, and a picture-gallery, 
with a place for performances. At this museum, in 
February, 1825, were engaged for six nights the 
Spanish dancers, Messrs. La Conta and Gonzalo, and 
Master Minich. La Conta danced the fisherman's 
hornpipe on the tight-rope, and performed the much 
more difficult exercise of saltation on the same rope 
with a living boy tied on each foot. Gonzalo danced 
on the tight-rope with wooden shoes. But his great 
performance was taking a collation from a table while 

himself seated upon a chair, both of which were fixed 
upon the rope and kept in equilibrium by the skill of 
the performer. 

Minich was the clown. Adrian performed there, 
in March, in the character of a Greek juggler, and 
Monsieur Helene, the pandean performer, joined him 
in April. An Egyptian mummy was added to the 
treasures of the exhibition. The picture-gallery con- 
tained some large and showy pictures. Patrick Mc- 
Gee, the Irish giant, was exhibited at this museum in 
the summer and fall of 1824. He was represented to 
be nearly eight feet high, and was conspicuous for the 
masculine beauty of his form. 

J. D. and H. I. Browere gave an interesting exhibi- 
tion of " the Grand Inquisition of Spain and Portu- 
gal, sixteen figures as large as life undergoing trials, 
tortures, and burning." The instruments of torture- 
were said to be made from drawings of the originals 
previous to their destruction in 1812. A "female 
sea-monster," caught upon Elk River, was also exhib- 
ited. There were four American dwarfs exhibited 
that year, — Joseph M. Stevens, thirty-seven inches 
high, and three sisters, Hannah, Rebecca, and Abi- 
gail Hatch, born at Falmouth, Mass. These sisters 
were described as well-proportioned and possessing 
the manners of educated women. They were exem- 
plary in their piety and Christian devotion. Their 
ages were between twenty-five and forty years, and 
their heights between thirty-six and forty-two inches. 

A rare set of Gobelin tapestry was exhibited at 
Earle & Sully's gallery about that time. This beau- 
tiful work had been made by order of the unfortu- 
nate queen Marie Antoinette to be presented to Gen. 
Lafayette. There were four large pieces, twelve by 
ten feet, and containing twelve figures, representing 
the four quarters of the globe, and twenty-four 
smaller pieces, for chair-covers, representing the 
arts and sciences. The whole was worth two thou- 
sand louis. 

A very curious piece of mechanical work was an 
allegorical representation of the treaty of Ghent, 
made about that time on a large organ by Michael 
Muckle, in Philadelphia. The figures, which were 
quite numerous, " moved naturally, as if alive." 

Lawrence Astolfi, a confectioner and distiller, who 
had established himself in business at No. 136 Market 
Street, about the year 1810, concluded, in 1813, to add 
the management of a place of public resort to his 
mercantile operations. To this effect he opened a 
summer theatre at the Columbian Garden, on Market 
Street, between Thirteenth Street and Centre Square. 
The first season was inaugurated by the Manfredi 
Company with the pantomime of " The Imaginary 
Sick Man." Manfredi played the Clown in this piece, 
and was assisted by Miss Catharine, as Columbine, and 
Messrs. Mestayer [Harlequin), Lewis, John, Parzote, 
and Grindone. Robertson, the "antipodean" per- 
former, Jones, and Johnston joined the company a 
short time after ; and the old actor, Fennell, appeared 



one night in a recitation. This company brought 
out, for the first time in this country, the pantomimes 
of " Valcour and Emilia, or the Unfortunate Lovers," 
and " Le Marechal de Logis." After this first season 
Astolfi did not keep up his summer theatre for two 
years, although his garden was much frequented as a 
place of resort and refreshment. In 1816 it was again 
announced as a place of amusement. The opening 
took place on the 14th of June, with a grand illumi- 
nation by means of two thousand five hundred lamps. 
In September of that year, T. Robinson gave a grand 
concert at the Columbian. The singers were himself 
and Miss Monier. Wolfe played the clarionet and 
Eobinson and Bracken blew the trumpets. In 1819, 
Mestayer gave theatrical performances there with a 
small company, consisting of himself and wife, their 
sons, John and Harry Mestayer, and Monsieur Dedus, 

Stanislaus Surin, a professor of legerdemain, who 
had performed in the city during the previous year, 
succeeded Astolfi in the management of the Colum- 
bian Garden in 1820. He changed the name of the 
place to "Tivoli Garden," and gave there exhibi- 
tions of jugglery, accompanied with songs by Mr. 
Scott and others. At the end of May a summer 
theatre was opened at the Tivoli with "The Purse" 
and " The Intrigue." The company consisted of 
Messrs. Thornton, King, Scott, Mestayer, Charles S. 
Porter, Bard, Simpson, Bloom, Klett, Laidly, Allen, 
Champion, and Godeau (tight-rope dancer), and Mes- 
dames Riddle, Still, Murray, Mestayer, Allen, Wil- 
liams (tight-rope dancer), and French. They per- 
formed farces and light pieces. In 1823, Villivave, 
the tight-rope performer, opened the Tivoli with 
"The Company of Five Nations," but did not re- 
main there very long. Louis Mestayer and Frederick 
Eberle took the Tivoli and fixed up a pretty little 
theatre there. John Crouta painted some of the 
scenes. The company consisted principally of the 
Mestayer and Eberle families, the former having two 
sons and two daughters, and the latter three sons and 
two daughters. Among the pieces brought out by 
them was "Modern Honor, or how to shun a Bul- 
let," which was written by Joseph Hutton, in ridicule 
of a duel which bad lately taken place between Col. 
Duffy, of South Carolina, and Col. Cummings, of 
Georgia. The season of 1824 was opened in May, 
with a very strong company, recruited in part from 
Drake's Cincinnati company. Among them were 
young Samuel Drake and his wife, — a daughter of 
Palmer Fisher by a first marriage, — Palmer Fisher 
and his young and pretty wife, who was afterwards 
long known to the American stage as Mrs. E. N. 
Thayer, W. Jones, William Anderson and wife, John 
Green, Crampton, Carter and wife, and others. Still, 
the vocalist, played a star engagement, and appeared 
in " The Devil's Bridge," " Poor Soldier," and other 
pieces. Mrs. Battersby, from the Chestnut Street 
Theatre, also played an engagement, at the close of 

which she took the public somewhat by surprise by 
appearing in the character of Hamlet. Mrs. H. A. 
Williams (afterwards Mrs. Maywood), who succeeded 
Mrs. Battersby, followed her predecessor's example 
by donning male attire and attempting the most un- 
feminine part of Richard III. 

On the 1st of July the Fishers and Drakes separated 
from the company and opened Vauxhall, thereby in- 
juring their old co-associates to some extent, without 
benefit to themselves, for their Vauxhall enterprise 
was short-lived, and proved a failure. The Tivoli 
company had the rare generosity to give the disap- 
pointed seceders a benefit after Vauxhall had closed. 
Still more praiseworthy was the act of old Joseph 
Jefferson, of the Chestnut, usually so scrupulous in 
maintaining his dignity as a member of a first-class 
theatre company. Remembering that he owed to 
Palmer Fisher a debt of gratitude for assistance given 
him by the latter before he left England, he volun- 
teered his services for this occasion, and appeared as 
Kit Casey in " Town and Country," and Shelty in 
" The Highland Reel." 

In April, 1825, the Tivoli Garden Theatre was 
opened under the management of a Mr. Johns, who, 
however, only remained five or six weeks. A new 
company was formed, and the Tivoli Garden Theatre 
reopened on the 23d of May with " The Soldier's 
Daughter" and " The Mayor of Garrett." The com- 
pany at this time was composed of Charle"s S. Porter, 
Henry Eberle, Morrison, Hardy, Charles Webb, 
Henry, John Crouta, Jr., Sinclair, Lowrey, Mestayer, 
Mrs. Johns, Mrs. Mestayer, Miss Grier, and the 
Misses Eberle. Sinclair was blind. He had origi- 
nally been a circus performer, but, losing his sight, 
could only be occasionally made use of in one or two 
parts. The actors generally joined to give him a 
benefit once in a season, on which occasion he usually 
played with painful naturalness the part of Darling, 
a blind man, in John Howard Payne's melodrama of 
"Adeline." In time Sinclair accumulated enough to 
enable him to set up a caffi and boarding-house op- 
posite the Bowery Theatre, New York, which was a 
favorite resort of theatrical people, and by the profits 
of which he was enabled to support himself. 

The Vauxhall Theatre, where the Fishers and 
Drakes made their unfortunate experiment in 1824, 
was a garden theatre, established in 1814. The estab- 
lishment occupied the whole block bounded by Wal- 
nut, George [Sansom], Juniper, and Broad Streets, 
which was the property of Capt. John Dunlap. The 
theatre was erected at the northeast corner of Broad 
and Walnut Streets, and was used for various sorts of 
exhibitions. Vauxhall Garden was a favorite place 
for the display of fire-works and for balloon ascen- 
sions. On the evening of Sept. 8, 1819, a balloon 
ascension, which had been announced, thereby at- 
tracting a large number of spectators, was postponed 
for some reason unsatisfactory to the crowd. A dis- 
turbance ensued, which soon culminated into a regu- 



lar riot. The theatre building was set on fire, and 
much damage done to the grounds, on which were 
various species of trees planted by the owner of the 

The Vauxhall Garden was refitted for public exhi- 
bitions, but not with the thoroughness and elegance 
of the original establishment. In November, 1820, 
the aeronaut Guille made a balloon ascension there 
with a parachute, in the car of which was a monkey. 
Both came down safely, the frightened monkey reach- 
ing the earth some minutes before his master. Wil- 
liam Muirhead and Reuben Traveller took the Vaux- 
hall in 1821, but did not have a very brilliant season. 
In October, 1822, Mr. Brown gave a grand pyrotech- 
nic exhibition at this garden. Among the subjects 
represented were a grand " Temple of Independence,'' 
sixty feet wide and twenty-four feet high, with a full- 
length portrait of Washington in the centre, and 
" The Cataract of the Falls of Niagara," which was 
forty feet wide. " Mr. Brown, the artist, will appear 
on the rocks in the centre, clothed in brilliant fire, 
and will suddenly leap into the gulf below.'' Also a 
representation of Mount Etna, which was given sev- 
eral times. 

After the unlucky attempt by the company of 
which Palmer Fisher and W. Jones were managers, 
the Vauxhall was reopened in 1825 by Joseph Di- 
ackeri, formerly the proprietor of the Philadelphia 
Garden. He made some improvements, among which 
was the building called the Lafayette Retreat, which 
was erected in the centre of the lot, and was sur- 
rounded by a flower-garden. He provided his guests 
with ice-creams, fruits, liquors and refreshments, and 
turtle-soup, and once a week illuminated the gardens 
and delighted the audience with the music of an ex- 
cellent orchestra. A grand exhibition of fire-works 
was given there by Brown & Regnault on the 23d of 
July of that year, in honor of Gen. Lafayette. The 
grand arch of Columbia, with the Goddess of Liberty 
reclining on the pillar of Fame, the Tree of Liberty, 
the American Eagle, etc., was the great feature of the 
exhibition. Lafayette was received at the entrance 
of the garden by one hundred little girls all dressed 
in white. It was altogether a very successful affair. 
After this exhibitions of fire- works and illuminations 
were occasionally given during the season, which 
closed about the middle of September. 

The satirist, Wain, in his " Sysiphii Opus," says of 
the closing of the Vauxhall, — 

" Now tradesmen's daughters shun the slippery streets, 
That oft have witnessed their nocturnal feats ; 
The shady bowers, where oft the cooling ice, 
The spicy sandwich, or the savory slice 
Rule o'er the senses with a sovereign sway, 
And rouse the soul to titillating play ; 
Where frothy mead expands its sparkling fumes, 
And many a heart to loving thraldom dooms, 
While genial darkness animates the frame, 
And balmy zephyrs fan the rising flame. 
Vauxhall no longer, with variegated light, 
Cheats the dull sameness of the moonless night, 

Where Love breathes softness to the attentive ear, 
And yielding nymphs the vows of FirmnesB hear, 
While Music's melodies through ether sail, 
Burst on the ear, and loiter on the gale." 

The public gardens, as we have shown, from being 
places of refreshment, where sports and games and 
occasional open-air exhibitions and concerts were 
gotten up for the entertainment of visitors, had, in 
several cases, been further improved by the construc- 
tion of summer theatres. In giving an account of 
these, we have unavoidably encroached upon the his- 
tory of the regular theatres, or, more properly speak- 
ing, the history of the legitimate drama in Philadel- 
phia, which will form another part of this chapter. 
Before coming to it, however, we must go back to an 
earlier period, and trace the introduction and prog- 
ress of another amusement which preceded the first 
theatrical performance, and which, less public in its 
nature, and not so generally indulged in, is never- 
theless intimately connected with the history of the 
changes that have taken place in the society of the 
Quaker City. 'We allude to dancing, which, at first 
forbidden, then suffered, finally became the amuse- 
ment par excellence of fashionable society, in which 
our city belles displayed their native gracefulness of 
figure and motion, so as to be acknowledged without 
superiors in the polished society of any country. 

In a chapter devoted to the history of amusements, 
dancing should perhaps have taken precedence of all 
others, for the taste for this sort of recreation seems 
to come naturally to man, even in the savage state. 
It is then a mimic representation of the passions that 
sway the uncivilized races. Our American Indians 
have their war-dances by which they excite their 
warriors to the highest pitch of frenzy, and rouse the 
warlike spirit of their young men ; the savage tribes 
in all countries have theirs, — for dancing is but the 
active display of exuberant joy, and what greater joy 
for a savage than the prospect of taking his enemy's 
skull or scalp ? The bamboula of the native African 
is an inimitable amorous dance, such as the most 
perfect professional dancer dare not attempt. The 
Spanish dances, expressive of the passion of love, are 
but an ardent and graceful pantomime, and the 
Spaniards probably inherited them from their old con- 
querors, the Moors. The voluptuous dance of the 
Bayaderes still charms the indolent potentates of the 
East. In fact, dancing is universal and natural, and 
the philosopher who first proclaimed that " man is 
the only animal who speaks," might have added "and 
dances." It is therefore a matter of some surprise 
that the good Friends who managed public affairs 
in Philadelphia in the olden time should have dis- 
couraged this amusement, especially as dancing has 
been made to express religious fervor as well as the 
human passions. Without holding the dancing Der- 
vishes as an example, did not King David dance be- 
fore the Ark of the Covenant? Besides, civilization 
had reduced dancing to an art, innocent and mean- 



ingless, whose sole effect is to give gracefulness to 
motion. The formal minuet of that time was about 
as solemn a performance as could be wished, never- 
theless dancing-masters were not numerous, and such 
as there were did not grow rich very rapidly. Still, 
as the population received frequent accessions of 
" worldly people," the terpsichorean art had its devo- 
tees, and the City Dancing Assembly was organized 
(1740). We have given in another chapter the list of 
the original subscribers, and also a list of the ladies 
of fashion who attended the ball of the City Assem- 
bly in 1757. This association was composed of the 
exclusives of the day, and none were invited who did 
not belong to the set. Mr. Watson preserved, among 
other curiosities illustrating the history of Philadel- 
phia society in that remote period, a card of admis- 
sion of the year 1749, addressed to Mrs. Jeykell, one 
of the beautiful leaders of fashion at the time. She 
was the granddaughter of the first Edward Shippen, 
a Quaker and first mayor of Philadelphia. She was 
married to the brother of Sir Joseph Jeykell, the sec- 
retary of Queen Anne. This card, like all cards used 
for such purposes in those early years, was written on 
the back of a common playing-card, there being no 
blank cards in the country. Watson copied one of 
these invitations which -was printed on the back of a 
playing-card, and read thus, to wit, — 

"The gentlemen of the Army present their com- 
pliments to Mrs. Jeykell, and beg the favour of her 
company to a ball at the State-House on Monday next, 
Saturday, September 20, 1755." 

The same writer tells this curious anecdote of a 
time when carriages were not so common as they are 
now : " One of the really honorables of the colonial 
days has told me of his mother (the wife of the chief 
justice) going to a great ball in Water Street, in her 
youthful days, to Hamilton's stores on the wharf, on 
Water Street next to the Drawbridge, she going to 
the same in her full dress on horseback." Think of it, 
ye belles of 1884, who, wrapped in furs, recline lan- 
guidly on the soft cushions of your hermetically closed 
carriage, and think the rapid drive to the ball-room 
door quite a trial this bleak winter weather. 

During the Revolutionary war the regular Assembly 
balls had been suspended. They were revived when 
peace was restored; but political feeling was a new 
element of discord added to the exclusiveness of the 
old Assembly association, which brought about divi- 
sions in society, and there were opposition balls given. 
This feeling died out, however, and in 1800 the rival 
factions were united in a single body. The Assembly 
balls in that year were held at the City Tavern. The 
managers for the season of 1800-1 were William Cra- 
mond, Jasper Moylan, Thomas M. Willing, Samuel 
Mifflin, Stephen Kingston, Samuel S. Cooper, James 
Wilcocks, and Charles W. Hare. For 1801-2 the 
managers were Thomas M. Willing, Samuel Mifflin, 
Stephen Kingston, Matthew Pearce, Peter McCall, 
and Henry Nixon. In 1803, the new Shakespeare 

Building having been finished at Sixth and Chestnut 
Streets, the first assembly was held in .Mr. Haines' 
room in that building. Afterward they were held at 
Francis' Hotel, which then occupied the Masters and 
Penn mansion (afterward the Washington mansion), 
Market Street, between Fifth and Sixth. 

Harmony, it appears, did not reign among the sub- 
scribers, and the Assembly dissolved. In November 
of that year, a meeting of the " ci-devant subscribers" 
having been called for the purpose of holding a sub- 
scription-ball, a new Assembly was organized. The 
balls of the ensuing season were given in a large room 
over J. B. Barry's furniture-store, in Second Street. 

In 1807 the managers of the Assembly were John 
Mifflin, Daniel W. Coxe, John B. Wallace, James 
Hamilton, Edward Shippen Burd, and Robert Hare, 
Jr. The first assembly for that year was held at the 
Exchange Coffee-House (formerly Bingham's man- 
sion), South Third Street, on the 29th of January. 
In 1810 the assemblies were held at what was then 
called the City Hotel, in the old McCall mansion, 
corner of Second and Union Streets. But things 
must have sadly changed since the time of the old 
" exclusives," if we may judge from the following 
criticism, which appeared in the Trangram, or Fashion- 
able Trifler in that year : 

" The principal supporters of our city practicing balls are a strange 
medley of capering youths, who, the moment they are released from 
the finger drudgery of pen, ink, and paper, repair to the Assembly, 
where they contrive to kill an evening in the pleasing avocations of 
dancing and quarreling, occasionally interspersed with* the delightful 
auxiliaries of smoking and drinking. When the promiscuous variety 
are met, they employ a portion of their time in quarreling for places in 
a set for a cotillion or country dance, and are famous for a peculiar dia- 
lect, for spitfire aggravations, provoking phrases, quaint oaths, and 
thundering mouth-grenades. Should the heat of the weather require 
more air than exercise, they retire to a witt drawing-room, where they 
stupefy their senses by the narcotic fumes of a cigar, dry their skins to 
parchment, bake their entrails to cinders, and exhaust all their radical 
moisture; so that when they return to their partners the room is per- 
fumed like the interior of a warehouse on James River. Some exercise 
other extravagances — qualify their lemonade with the tincture of pure 
cognac, of which their fair partners sip a drop or two to prevent danger 
from excessive heat, and which theBe fopllngs drench in quantities, so 
that in the conclnsion they become as noisy and quarrelsome as apes." 

It is not to be wondered at, therefore, if the organ- 
ization lost much of its social attraction, and ended 
in dissolution. Its last balls were given in 1815. 
After that it must have ceased to exist, for in a state- 
ment published in 1817 it was announced that gentle- 
men who were disposed to revive the City Dancing 
Assembly had held a meeting at Renshaw's hotel, and 
had resolved that "in the city of Philadelphia, the 
residence of so much elegance, and the resort of so 
much gayety, there ought to be Dancing Assemblies." 
Accordingly subscription-books were ordered to be 
opened, under the direction of David Lenox, George 
Harrison, Thomas Cadwalader, Robert Wharton, 
Charles J. Ingersoll, Samuel H. Wilcocks, Thomas 
F. Learning, William S. Biddle, and James Craig. 
Subscription price, twenty dollars. The committee 
was requested to make such inquiries, "respecting 
the sum of money formerly subscribed for the erec- 



tion of an assembly-room as may be proper, and that 
it consult with the present trustees of that fund re- 
specting its disposition.'' Action upon this subject 
was prevented by a notice given in the same papers 
that a Cotillion Party had been formed, of which 
Benjamin Tilghman, Thomas I. Wharfcon, Charles S. 
Coxe, Edward S. Coxe, William Rawle, Jr., James 
Craig, Thomas W. Morris, and Joseph P. Norris, Jr., 
were managers. In consequence of this, notice was 
given that another meeting of the projectors of the City 
Dancing Assembly was held, at which it was resolved 
that " the Cotillion Party being already organized on 
an extensive scale, it is considered inexpedient to take 
any measure for the re-establishment of the City 
Dancing Assembly for the present year." These 
parties were given at the Masonic Hall. They were 
continued for a couple of years, after which the old 
title, "City Dancing Assembly," was revived. The 
balls were held up to 1825 and afterward. 

Wain, in his amusing book, " The Hermit in Amer- 
ica," describes one of these cotillion parties at the 
Masonic Hall, which he represents to have been given 
under fashionable auspices. The leader of the or- 
chestra band was the colored fiddler, Frank Johnson, 
who enjoyed a high reputation in respectable society 
as a performer of dance and concert music. Says 
the "Hermit,"— 

"The room was about half filled with the most splendid collection of 
belles and beaux. The greater portion of them were engaged in danc- 
ing cotillions, after the fashion, of my country [France]. The decora- 
tions of the saloon, independent of certain dark-looking figures (appar- 
ently in bronze), which were placed at certain intervals around, are 
plain, but neat and ornamental. The figures alluded to have the most 
comical effect imaginable, nnd are no doubt placed there for the purpose, 
— seeing that no place is better adapted to the free and admissible use of 
the risible muscles than a ball-room. The ingenious managers deserve 
credit for this invention, for I believe it is indisputably original." 1 

1 Here is another spicy morceau from the same work. The " Hermit"' 
attends, with an American friend, a public cotillion party at Masonic 
Hall, and the following dialogue ensues: 

"'But I observe a kind of pen fenced off, as it were, at the other ex- 
tremity of the room, for what purpose I am at a loss to determine.' 

'"That is a very useful inclosure, I assure you. It Berves for three 
purposes of no little consequence. The first and the most important is 
the accommodation of those wise and cautiouB matrons, who, knowing 
from experience the necessity of a mother's presence on such occasions, 
accompany their daughters to all places of public and private resort. 
This is a custom that should never be destroyed. All who have experi- 
ence know what young ladies are at home, and none are better judges 
than their mothers. Whenever you find a mother particularly anxious 
to observe her daughter's motions during the dance, and that daughter 
equally anxious to reach the side of her mother after i ts conclusion, you 
may take it for granted that some well-complied-with stipulation has 
alone guaranteed her appearance at the ball, and that some private do- 
mestic reason exists for the use of this discreet caution. Now, these 
suspicious mothers, by arranging themselves in certain situations within 
the pen, as you call it, can command a fair view of everything transact- 
ing therein, which it would be impossible to do on thn outside. The 
dutiful daughter Is hound by the stipulation aforesnid (on pain of for- 
feiting the pleasures of the next cotillion party) to make her appear- 
ance within the limits and remain under the watchful eye of her 
mother, until inclination to dance with her — inclination to dance with 
himself or the want of a better partner— prompts some bowing Adonis 
to rescue her from bondage. . . . The second purpose is diametrically 
opposite to the first. It is to be rationally supposed that all mothers are 
not equally careful of their daughters* manners, and that the spirits of 
all daughters do not require equal restraint. I know, to the contrary, 

The English traveler, Francis Hall, in 1818, de- 
scribes a dancing-party at a private house in such 
terms that we fail to recognize the gay, witty belles, 
and intellectual society-men of Philadelphia, de- 
scribed by so many unprejudiced foreigners. Did Mr. 
Hall attempt to hoax his readers, or was he himself 
the victim of a hoax ? He says, — 

"Chairs are arranged in a close semicircle, the ladies file into the 
room and silently take their seats beside each other, the men occupying 
the chord of the segment, vis-d-vie to their fair foes (for Biich their cau- 
tious distanco and rare communication would indicate them to be). The 
men, in this situation, discuss trade and politics, the ladies, fashions and 
domestic incidents, with all the quiet and gravity becoming the solem- 
nity of the meeting. Tea and coffee are handed about, and in due pro- 
cess of time, cakes, lemonade, etc. Should there be no dancing, the 
forces draw off after having for several hours thus reconnoitred each 
other. When they dance, the men step forward, and, more by gesture 
than word, indicate their wishes to their fair partners. Cotillions then 
commence with a gravity and perseverance almost pitiable. 'Dancing,' 
says the Marquis De Chastellux, 'is said to be at once the emblem of 
gayety and of love.' Here it seems to be the 'emblem of legislation and 
marriage.' The animation displayed by the feet never finds its way into 
the countenance, to light up the eye or deepen the rose on the cheek — 
'Which hangs in chill and lifeless lustre there, 
Like a red oak-leaf in the wintry air; 
While the blue eye above it coldly beams 
Like moonlight radiance upon frozen streams.' 

thero is a class of maidens, notoriously extensive, and technically 
termed "wall-flowers" — from the astonishing pertinacity with which 
they adhere to that inanimate substance in spite of the animated capers 
and nimble pigeon-wings of everything else young and movable in the 
room. I must, however, do them the justice to observe that whenever 
a tempestuous night, a rival party, or other fortuitous circumstance 
renders their services indispensable in the formution of a cotillion, 
there is not an instance upon record in which they have not, in the 
very essence of accommodation, cheerfully acquiesced in tho wishes of 
the gentlemen and joined in the dance. And so grateful are these last 
for favors thus undeservedly conferred upon them that they take special 
care never to put them to further trouble than they can possibly avoid. 
Tou observe them now, seated opposite the great entrance, only distin- 
guishable in color from the composition figures above. Tho gratitude 
"of the gentlemen will prevent their molestation, as their services are 
not requisite this evening. But I have not yet informed you of the 
second purpose, which is simply to afford these easy mothers an oppor- 
tunity of ruining their good husbands by playing half-dollar rubbers of 
whist. All these accommodations afforded to the matronizing part of 
the community are the result of long and deep thought on the part of 
the managers. The more inducements held out to them, the fewer ob- 
jections to their daughters* appearance. Thto is all perfectly under- 
stood and skillfully acted upon. Now, as to the third,— and, many have 
averred, the moBt necessary purpose, — that, sir, is our supper-room,* he 
continued, pointing toward the inclosure. 

"' Supper-room T I exclaimed. ' Impossible 1 Tou cannot seriously 
tell me that the assembled wealth, fiishion, and nobility of the first city 
in tho United StateB are reduced to the pitiful necessity of fencing off a 
corner of their ball-room for that purpose?* 


" ' Tes, sir I In that space, which yon have worthily denominated a 
"pen," seated at a dozen small tables, sup what you are pleased to call 
"the nobility of Philadelphia." Nor can they even thus humbly enjoy 
the frugal repaBt. " Hungry expectants" are gathered around, watch- 
ing the slow progre-s of mastication, on the republican principle of 
"rotation in office must be respected," before the appetite is barely 


'"Hold, Mr. Hermit! Tou have not yet heard all. What do you 
imagine the supper consists oft* 

" ' It is impossible to conjecture.' 

"'Pickled oysters, and bread and butter! . . . But,' he continued, 
'the want of accommodation is the reaBon assigned to theae "supper 
apologies," as they are generally called. There is not a building in the 
great city of Philadelphia sufficiently extensive to furnish at the same 
time a ball and a Bupper-room, with the exception of the Washington 



One conceives, on these occasions, how dancing may become, as it is 
among the Shakers, a religious ceremony." 

A rival association, called the Columbian Dancing 
Assembly, was organized in 1823, and gave its first 
ball at the saloon in Library Street, in December. In 
the succeeding years the Columbia's balls were held 
at the Masonic Hall. 

The earliest mention of a dancing-school in Phila- 
delphia is in the advertisement of Mrs. Ball, who, in 
1730, kept a school in Letitia Court. " French, play- 
ing on the spinet, and dancing," were among the ac- 
complishments in which young ladies were instructed 
in that establishment. In 1738, Theobald Hacket 
advertised his dancing-school. In 1742, Richard 
Kynall, the fencing- master, also taught dancing, and 
in 1746, Kennet, another professor of the small- 
sword, gave instruction in the art of Terpsichore. 
Bolton, another dancing-master, flourished about the 
middle of the century, and Tioli and his assistant, 
Godwin, about 1770 or 1772. In 1785, Mr. Patterson 
and Monsieur Russell, both members of the Ryan & 
Wells Company, taught dancing. Russell was the 
first dancer that introduced the '' pigeon-wing'' step 
in Philadelphia ball-rooms. John Durang succeeded 
Russell as a teacher. Mr. and Mrs. Byrne, English 
dancers, who came here in 1793, with the first Chest- 
nut Street Theatre Company, opened a dancing-school 
at Oeller's Hotel in 1800. After teaching one season 
they returned to England. 

B. Quesnet, an artist of merit, came in 1796 as 
ballet-master to Hallam and Henry's company, at the 
South Street Theatre. He set up a school, about 1800, 
in Harmony Place, and gave dancing parties at Kerr's 
ball-room, in Fourth Street. In the succeeding year 
he engaged Baconnais as his assistant, and the dan- 
cing academy was removed to No. 64 South Fourth 
Street, and some years after to No. 30 South Sixth 
Street. When, in 1810, Mathew Carey built a large 
printing-office on Library Street, opposite the Bank 
of the United States, the second story of this building 
was fitted up as an assembly-room, and Quesnet be- 
came the lessee. In 1817 he had his dancing academy 
at Washington Hall. He announced a great ball for 
the 22d of February, in honor of Washington's birth- 
day ; but there happened to be two other balls in 
preparation for the same day and object, one by the 
citizens and one by the military. Quesnet put off 
his ball until a later period of the season, the citi- 
zens' project was abandoned, and the field left to the 
military, who gave a very fine birthnight ball. The 
managers on this occasion were Capt. Thomas I. 
Wharton, Capt. John Swift, Capt. Thomas Anthony, 
Lieut. John B. Dickinson, Lieut. Cephas C. Childs, 
Cornet E. S. Fullerton, and G. Fairman. 

Quesnet died in 1819, after a very successful career 
in a profession in which he had few, if any, superiors. 

William Francis, comedian, was for a few years 
another successful dancing-master. He came here in 
the latter part of the last century. In 1800 he taught 

"the last new minuet as performed at the Grand 
Opera-House, Paris, the minuet de la coeur, the 
gavoto, waltzes, strathspeys, Highland reels, with 
the steps peculiarly adapted to those favorite dances; 
the Philadelphia, Baltimore, New Bath, and London 
cotillions, hornpipes, and the American country 
dances, after the most approved and fashionable 
styles." In 1803 his balls were given at the new 
assembly-room, adjoining the theatre, Sixth and 
Chestnut Streets. Francis entered into a copartner- 
ship with John Durang in 1806. In 1808 they gave 
their "farewell ball," but their academy was still 
kept open at Harmony Hall. They were assisted in 
the management by Durang's young sons, Harris and 
Charles, who gave a ball in 1810. 

Monsieur Sicard commenced to teach dancing as 
early as 1790. That he was popular as a teacher is 
evident from the fact that he retired from the profes- 
sion with a competency about 1812. He lived in 
Philadelphia for some years afterward, his name 
being set down in the Directory with the affix "gen- 
tleman." Dupuy assisted Sicard in 1809, when they 
gave a ball for the benefit of distressed mariners. 

The year 1800 seems to have been particularly pro- 
lific in dancing-masters. In addition to those already 
mentioned, the following-named made their appear- 
ance in that year : Auguste Auriol, " late from Paris," 
announced himself as a teacher of the art, and became 
an assistant of Quesnet, but before the year was out 
he established his own dancing academy. He taught 
until 1809, giving balls regularly every season. He 
then went to France, and was absent one year, during 
which time Mr. Audrale managed the academy. 
Auriol returned in 1810, and remained in Philadel- 
phia until 1818, when he was succeeded by Mr. Shira. 
Auguste Auriol came from a family of famous dancers. 

In October, 1800, Henry Paul Nugent, "formerly 
principal dancer at the theatre," proposed to give 
lessons in literature and the art of dancing. In a 
long and curious advertisement, Nugent says of him- 
self, — 

" He was regularly bred to letters and the ornamental arts, by which 
alone he has supported himself for several years. He was a pupil to 
Mr. Sheridan, the author of 'The Art of Reading,' and has taught 
the classics in a reputable academy near London. The art of dancing 
he learned in France and England, and he practiced as an assistant to the 
most eminent dancing-master in Bath. The languages Nugent is ac- 
quainted with are the English, French, Latin, and Greek. These he has 
been accustomed to teach ; but he wishes to teach the English language 
alone, as there are fewer skillful teachers of that language than of the 
others, as he has made it his principal study, and as the improvements 
which pupils make in their vernacular tongue, if properly instructed, 
render the task of the teacher no way irksome." 

Insisting upon the necessity of teaching children to 
read with propriety, he incidentally states that " many 
young ladies of good abilities, on leaving an expen- 
sive boarding-school, have been found by their parents 
strangely deficient in reading and writing English," 
a remark which is lamentably true in the present 

Ignace Fraisier, a French gentleman of good family 



and education, and who had held an officer's com- 
mission in the American army during the Revolu- 
tionary war, opened a dancing-school in 1801. From 
some motive of sensitive pride he dropped his family 
name, and was commonly known as Monsieur Ignace. 
In 1802 he announced that in addition to lessons in 
dancing, he proposed " to instruct about twelve 
scholars in the French language, and to act as in- 
terpreter." His success as a teacher of French was 
so great that for some years he devoted most of his 
attention to this branch, although he did not give up 
his dancing-school. In 1823 he gave instruction to 
ladies and gentlemen in music and dancing, and in 
the French and English languages, and also gave 
notice that he was a sworn interpreter. Mr. Fraisier 
died in 1825, aged seventy-eight years. The fact that 
he had served, his adopted country as an officer was 
not generally known until his obituary notice was 
published. As the obscure Monsieur Ignace, he had 
won the respect of the community among which he 
had labored so industriously during a quarter of a 

Mr. Warrell, of the theatre, kept a dancing acad- 
emy for a short time in 1804. Monsieur Epervil, in 
1808, made an attempt to introduce masquerade balls 
in Philadelphia. He published the programme of a 
series of three balls, but only two were given. Public 
opinion was decidedly opposed to this kind of amuse- 
ment, and within two weeks of the publication of 
Epervil's programme an act of Assembly was passed 
declaring masquerades and masked balls to be com- 
mon nuisances. The penal provisions of the bill were 
very stringent, showing that the evil to be suppressed 
was considered a serious one. Section 1 of the act 
provided that — 

"every housekeeper witbiD thiB Commonwealth who Bhall knowingly 
permit and suffer a masquerade or masked ball to be given in his or her 
house, and every person who shall Bet on foot, promote, or encourage 
any masquerade or masked ball, and every person who shall knowingly 
attend or be present at any masquerade or masked ball in mask or other- 
wise, being thereof legally convicted, . . . shall for each and every of- 
fense be sentenced to an imprisonment not exceeding three months, and 
to pay a fine not exceeding one thousand nor less than fifty dollars, and 
to give security in such sum as the court may direct to keep the peace 
and be of good behavior for one year." 

This had the immediate effect of putting a stop to 
Mr. Epervil's preparations to initiate the Pbiladel- 
phians into the follies of the Parisian Bala de V Optra, 
and he left for other parts, deploring the want of (bad) 
taste of the legislators. 

In 1809, F. C. Labbe, " late from Paris," announced 
himself by giving a grand ball at the City Hotel, and 
a few days later opened a dancing academy. About 
the year 1812 he gave up dancing to embark in the 
calico-printing business, but was probably not very 
successful in that enterprise, for in 1818 he returned 
to his old profession, and took Auriol's old ball-room, 
in Spruce Street. Shortly after he moved to Carey's 
building, hitherto occupied by Quesnet, who now re- 
tired. This building was destroyed by fire in 1820, 

and Labbe transferred his ball-room and school, tem- 
porarily, to Washington Hall. When Carey's build- 
ing was rebuilt he returned to his old quarters, which 
were elegantly fitted up. Mr. Labbe continued in the 
exercise of his profession for some years after this, 
and is still well remembered by old Philadelphians. 
He is described as "small in stature, with bushy 
black hair, and jet-black eyes. He was very graceful 
in his carriage and manners, and very nimble on his 

Monsieur Trigant & Son opened a dancing academy 
in 1809 ; they were also associated with Monsieur L. 
Auguste in a fencing academy. In 1816 they were 
joined by Monsieur Gigion. In 1820, B. Auguste 
succeeded to the dancing interests of this school. In 
1821 he opened a French academy in addition to his 
dancing-school. In 1825 he was teaching dancing at 
reduced rates, from which it is to be supposed that he 
was not as successful as some of his competitors. A 
Mr. Hipolite taught dancing in 1809, together with 
the broadsword and small-sword exercises. He gave, 
in the spring of that year, a grand exhibition, which 
was called " a grand tournament and ball." He does 
not appear to have made a long stay in Philadelphia. 

Thomas Whale, an Englishman, kept a dancing- 
school from 1809 to 1812, when he either died or 
removed from the city. He was the father of Master 
Henry Whale, who, in 1809, was attached to the 
Chestnut Street Theatre Company as a dancer, and 
appeared under the title of the "Infant Vestris." 
On the 27th of November of that year The Tangram 
said of Whale, " Considering that Englishmen are 
not reputed for the elegance and grace of their move- 
ments, he promises fair to be the head of his profes- 
sion, for, laying aside the gentility of his address 
and the politeness of his phraseology, he powders 
his hair, which is at least respectably, if not ele- 
gantly, done." In September, 1825, notice was given 
that " Henry Whale, known some twenty years ago 
as the Infant Vestris, — having danced on the Phila- 
delphia stage with much iclat, though very young 
then, — now proposes to open a dancing academy." 
He stated that he had been teaching dancing in New 
York and Albany. He opened his dancing-school 
at the northwest corner of Seventh and Chestnut 

The dancing-masters who practiced their art in 
Philadelphia in the early period were mostly, as it 
has been shown in the preceding sketches, dancers 
attached to a theatre company, or professional dan- 
cers, who, in many instances, taught also the art of 
fencing. The French Revolution and, to a still 
greater extent, the exodus from San Domingo of 
white families who had escaped massacre at the 
hands of the revolted blacks brought to the various 
American ports numerous refugees, who, in this hour 
of their misfortune, turned to account the accom- 
plishments acquired in better days with no other 
view than that of shining in the polished society in 



which they moved. Fencing, dancing, and music 
were indispensable arts with the French gentleman 
of the old rigime. Some added to these a fair knowl- 
edge of drawing and painting, while not a few, whose 
fathers had adopted Jean Jacques Rousseau's ideas 
concerning education, were lucky enough to know 
some genteel trade and could turn or carve wood and 
ivory, engrave on metal, etc. They set themselves to 
work bravely, and by steady industry managed to 
eke out a support for themselves and their families. 
Their native politeness, their industry, and the cheer- 
fulness with which they accepted poverty after having 
known all the advantages of wealth and social posi- 
tion, won the regard and sympathy of the people 
among whom fate had made them cast their lot. 

Philadelphia had her full share of these worthy 
refugees. Of such was Victor Guillou, who, about 
1810, had a dancing academy at No. 294 Market 
Street. His ancestors were originally from Brittany, 
and of very ancient lineage. Keradec Guillou left 
France in 1697, and settled in San Domingo, where 
he purchased land, and in a few years was known as 
a wealthy sugar and coffee planter, the proprietor of 
vast estates. Victor, his great-grandson, was born in 
1776. In accordance with the custom prevailing 
among the wealthy San Domingans, he was sent to 
France at the tender age of seven years to receive 
the education befitting his station, — an education 
which included a complete course of artistic accom- 
plishments. The stormy beginning of the French 
Revolution did not hinder Victor Guillou from pur- 
suing his studies, but when, in 1794, the Convention 
decreed the emancipation of the blacks, already in 
open rebellion, in San Domingo, the young man re- 
turned immediately to the colony and joined the mili- 
tary force organized by the planters for the protec- 
tion of their homes and families. Love claims its 
supremacy even in the most troublous times : two 
years after his return home Victor married the ami- 
able daughter of DieudonnS de Las Casas, a French 
nobleman, who had been banished by Louis XV. 
The young couple were not allowed very long the 
peaceful enjoyment of the honeymoon. Matters 
had grown worse in the colony, the fine plantations 
of the valley of the Artibonite were sacked and 
burned by the blacks, and whole families of whites 
massacred. Capt. Guillou's wife and the female 
members of his family were saved almost by a 
miracle, his father losing his life while protecting 
their flight. The young soldier succeeded in placing 
these terrified ladies on board of a vessel bound for 
Philadelphia ; bidding them God-speed, he returned 
to his post. It was not until after the last hope of 
the planters was destroyed by the capitulation of the 
French expedition to the English, in 1803, that 
Guillou could think of joining his wife and family in 
Philadelphia. Here he resorted to giving lessons in 
dancing as a means of support. To this he soon 
added the teaching of fencing and the French lan- 

guage. In later years he assisted his wife in con- 
ducting a large boarding-school for young ladies, in 
which establishment he was among the first teachers 
in the United States to introduce the Jacotot or Pes- 
talozzian method of instruction. 

Guillou's dancing academy was transferred to Ma- 
sonic Hall in 1812. In 1819, this building having 
been destroyed by fire, the academy was removed to 
Washington Hall, but Guillou returned to his old 
quarters as soon as Masonic Hall was rebuilt in 1820. 
In 1821 he announced his practicing ball for Febru- 
ary 3d, in honor of which was introduced a great 
novelty: "His ball-room will be brilliantly illumi- 
nated with gas, the light representing a fanciful fire- 
work, which will be represented as the bat's wing, 
oak-leaf, and honeysuckle flower." On the 8th of 
January, 1823, Mr. Guillou gave a grand military 
ball at Masonic Hall, to celebrate the battle of New 
Orleans and Gen. Jackson's victory. This was per- 
haps the first commemoration of this day by a ball. 
In December, 1824, Mr. Guillou removed his dancing- 
school to Musical Fund Hall, and gave notice that 
he would leave this country in the following spring. 
He recommended as his successor F. D. Mallet, a 
teacher of eighteen years' experience. Mr. Guillou 
joined in 1827 with Gen. Henry Lallemand, who mar- 
ried a niece of Stephen Girard, in a scheme to induce 
French emigration to Florida, then recently acquired 
by the United States. This failing, he bought a 
plantation in the island of Porto Rico, but he was 
unfortunate in this venture, and after three years of 
trouble and disappointment, he returned to Philadel- 
phia in 1828, and resumed his profession of dancing- 
master. But he still longed for that pleasant planter's 
life, to which he had been brought up, as a reward 
for his laborious exertions, and in 1836 he purchased 
a sugar estate in Cuba, and removed to that island. 
He died there in 1841. 

In 1813, Louis Arnal, from Paris, had a dancing 
academy in Gofforth Alley. Mr. and Mrs. Ferdi- 
nand Durang gave their annual ball at Quesnet's, in 
Library Street, in April, 1814. Mr. Durang was a 
son of John Durang, a member of the old American 
Theatre Company; and the lady was Miss Plane, an 
actress attached to New York and Charleston theatres. 

A. Bonaffon opened his academy in 1819. In Sep- 
tember, 1824, he gave a grand ball at the Masonic 
Hall, on the evening of the arrival of Gen. Lafayette, 
and illuminated the saloon with gas and transparen- 
cies of Washington at Trenton and Lafayette at 

M. Fedelou, " lately from France," and Monsieur 
J. Pauppinelle both opened dancing-schools here in 

The Quakers and rigid Presbyterians who, in the 
early days, frowned down dancing and other "frivo- 
lous amusements," could not be expected to counte- 
nance the introduction of the drama in Philadelphia. 
So when Murray and Kean's company of Thespians 



made their appearance, in 1749, they were not per- 
mitted to make a long stay, but were ordered off as 
soon as the worthy rulers of the city's morals realized 
the fact that their entertainments possessed irresisti- 
ble attractions. So Murray and Kean went to New 
York, and for five years the Philadelphians did not 
see a play. During this time, however, the population 
had increased, and the ruling influence was divided. 
A very large proportion of the citizens, among whom 
were not a few men of wealth and position, advocated 
more liberal ideas as regarded public amusements. 
They could not admit that it was sinful to laugh at a 
good farce, or even to weep over the tragic fate of the 
virtuous hero or heroine. Whether a play is meant 
to show the inevitable defeat of villainy and punish- 
ment of crime, or it merely holds up to ridicule the 
foibles and follies of society, it contains a good moral 
lesson, — our old plays did, at all events, and the play- 
wright's motto, " Castigat ridendo mores," was true 
then, if it has ceased to be so now. In the year 1753, 
Lewis Hallam's English company, after traveling a 
year in the Southern colonies, and performing in 
various places in Virginia and Maryland, went to 
New York, where they opened their theatre in the 
month of September. The report of the great suc- 
cess of their talented actors awakened a desire among 
the most liberal-minded Philadelphians that Hallam 
should visit the Quaker city. The matter was not 
arranged without opposition, and a goodly quantity 
of printer's ink was used in arguments pro and con ; 
but the required license had been obtained from 
Governor Hamilton, upon the recommendation of a 
number of gentlemen of influence, and Hallam's com- 
pany came to Philadelphia. 

On the 25th of April, 1754, they gave their first 
performance in a large brick warehouse of William 
Plumsted, situated in King or Water Street, between 
Pine and Lombard Streets. The house extended 
through to Front Street, on which there was an en- 
trance by means of stairs placed on the outside of the 
building. This house remained standing until the year 
1849, when it was pulled down. The opening piece 
was the tragedy of "The Fair Penitent," followed 
by the farce, " Miss in her Teens." Mr. Rigby spoke 
a prologue, and Mrs. Hallam an epilogue written for 
the occasion, in which, after defending the stage 
from the accusation of sinfulness, and alluding to the 
effect produced by the tragedy upon the audience, 
she asked, — 

" If then the Boul in Virtue's cause we move. 
Why should the friends of Virtue disapprove ?" 

This temporary theatre was neatly fitted up. Over 
the stage glittered the motto, " Totius mundus agit 
hislrionem." On the opening night the house was 
very full. The audience was in the best of spirits, 
but an unpleasant disturbance occurred when it was 
discovered that one of the unfriendly opponents of 
the theatre occupied a seat in the pit. Instead of 
being allowed to sit the play through, with the 

chance of his becoming converted to a more liberal 
course, he was summarily ejected. The Governor's 
license was for twenty-four nights. This number 
was extended to thirty, and the theatre closed on the 
24th of June, after having had a brilliant and profit- 
able season. One of the performances was given for 
the benefit of the charity school. 

The members of this company, whose performances 
were as the introductory chapter of the history of the 
stage in Philadelphia, were Mr. and Mrs. Hallam, 
Miss Helen Hallam, and her two brothers, the Mas- 
ters L. and Hallam, Messrs. Malone, Clarkson, 

Rigby, Singleton, Adcock, Miller, and Bell, and 
Mesdames Adcock, Rigby, Becceley, and Clarkson, 
and, possibly, Mr. and Mrs. Love and Mr. Hewlet, 
who were members of the company when they per- 
formed in New York. The pieces performed, so far 
as ascertained, were (beside the two already named), 
" Tunbridge Walks ; or, the Yeomen of Kent ;" " The 
Country Wake; or, Hob in the Well;" " The Game- 
ster ;" " Tamerlane ;" " A Wife well Managed ;" " The 
Careless Husband;" "Harlequin Collector" (a farce) ; 
and " The Provoked Husband." 

Hallam's company came back to Philadelphia in 
1759, to occupy a permanent theatre, erected for 
them in Southwark, at the corner of Cedar (or South) 
and Vernon Streets, 6n Society Hill, which was just 
outside of the corporated limits. David Douglass, 
who had married the widow of the elder Hallam 
after the latter's death in the West Indies, was the 
director. He had contracted with Alexander, a 
blacksmith, and William Williams, painter, for the 
erection and decoration of this theatre, and leave had 
been obtained from Governor Denny to that effect. 
The Quakers, the Presbyterian Synod, the ministers 
and elders of the German Lutheran congregation, 
and the Baptist congregation, respectively, petitioned 
the Assembly to prohibit the building of the theatre. 
The Assembly passed a bill to suppress lotteries and 
plays. Alexander and Williams, the contractors, 
who had progressed with their work, petitioned the 
Governor to take their case into consideration. The 
Governor, however, signed the bill, and it went to 
England, where it was repealed by the king and 
Council, as had always been most of the provincial 
laws against popular amusements. This theatre was 
opened on the 25th of June, 1759, but either because 
the house was too small and not well fitted up, or 
because the opposition had a discouraging effect, the 
company only played in it one season. They left 
Philadelphia, and remained away more than five 
years. On their return a new house, much larger 
than the first one, was built, at the corner of South 
and Apollo Streets. This new theatre was opened 
on the 12 ; th of November, 1766. The company, 
which formerly had been designated as " a company 
of comedians from London," now assumed the title 
of " The American Company." It was at this theatre, 
and by this company, that the first play by an Amer- 



lean author performed on any regular stage was given, 
on the 24th of April, 1767. This was " The Prince of 
Parthia," by Thomas Godfrey, Jr., of Philadelphia. 

Mr. Graydon, in his " Memoirs," speaks with praise 
of the various members of this company, especially 
of Lewis Hallam, although he admits that the latter's 
declamation, in tragedy, was "either mouthing or 
ranting," and that having once ventured to appear in 
" Hamlet," either at Drury Lane or Covent Garden, 
his acting had not been to the taste of a London 
audience, " though he was admitted to be a man of 
pleasing and interesting address." Mr. Graydon adds 
that "he was, however, at Philadelphia, as much the 


soul of the Southwark Theatre as ever Garrick was of 
Drury Lane; and if, as Dr. Johnson allows, popu- 
larity in matters of taste is unquestionable evidence 
of merit, we cannot withhold a considerable portion 
. of it from Mr. Hallam, notwithstanding his faults." 

The " American Company" again performed at the 
Southwark Theatre in the winters of 1768 and 1769- 
70. They returned in 1772, and reopened the theatre 
on the 28th of October; the performances closed in 
April, 1773. During this season "The Conquest of 
Canada ; or, the Siege of Quebec" — the second original 
American drama ever performed on the stage — was 
produced (Feb. 17, 1773). Great effect was given to 
this play by the introduction of soldiers from the bar- 
racks, sailors from the king's ships in port, with artil- 
lery, boats, etc. In January of that year Francis 
Mentges, who became an officer in the United States 
service during the Revolution, made his first appear- 
ance as a dancer, under the name of Monsieur Fran- 
cis, at the Southwark Theatre. The company was 
again at the theatre in November, 1773, but the season 
only lasted two weeks. Mrs. Douglass died, and the 
company left the city. 

The troublous times had come, and the momentous 
questions which filled the public mind left little room 
for any thoughts of amusements. Among the earliest 
resolutions passed by the Provincial Congress when 
it assembled, in September, 1774, was the following : 

" That we will discourage every species of extrava- 
gance and dissipation, especially horse-racing, and all 
kinds of gaming, cock-fighting, exhibition of shows, 
plays, and other expensive diversions and entertain- 

When the company arrived, in October, they had 
nothing to do but to re-embark, which they did, 
going to the West Indies. The only performance at 
the theatre that season was on the 19th of September, 
when the "Lecture on Heads" and the recitation of 
" Bucks have at ye all," were given by Mr. Goodman, 
of the American Company, and Mr. Allen, of the 
Theatre Royal, Edinburgh. Mr. Goodman was a 
young man, who, after reading law for some time with 
Mr. Eoss, had felt an irresistible vocation for the 
stage, and had joined the American Company, prob- 
ably in 1770 or 1772. 

The Southwark Theatre remained closed until it 
was opened by the British officers during their occu- 
pation of the city in 1777-78. These amateur per- 
formers gave regular plays, for which tickets of ad- 
mission were duly sold, the proceeds going to the 
widows and orphan children of the soldiers. The 
ill-fated Maj. Andre 1 and Capt. Delancy painted the 
scenes and other decorations. The curtain, repre- 
senting a waterfall scene, the work of young Andre, 
remained in use until the theatre was burnt down, 
May 9, 1823. After the return of the Continental 
Congress, a company of actors, whose names are not 
now known, gave some performances at the South- 
wark Theatre, in September and October, 1778. 
Congress, at this time, passed a resolution prohibit- 
ing "any person holding an office under the United 
States" from attending play-houses and theatrical 
entertainments, and in March, 1779, the Legislature 
of Pennsylvania passed a new act upon vice and 
immorality, in which was incorporated a provision 
against theatrical performances and shows of every 
kind. Various efforts were made during the suc- 
ceeding years to have this provision repealed, but 
with little success. Lewis Hallam, with the old 
American Company, was very near obtaining a 
repeal during the session of 1784-85, bnt eventu- 
ally failed. He then opened the theatre on the 1st 
of March, 1785, for miscellaneous entertainments 
and singing. Growing bolder, he gave, at a later 
period of the year, exhibitions or readings of scenes 
from plays. 

Hallam was assisted by Mr. and Mrs. Allen, of the 
old American Company, who aided in recitations and 
songs, John Durang, a native of Lancaster, who was 
popular as a dancer, and Charles Busselot, formerly 
an officer of the French army. The entertainments 
were recitations, scenes from plays, pantomimes, 
songs, and scenic illusions, accompanied by mechan- 
ical effects. The entertainments were carried on till 
the 29th of July. 

Notwithstanding the determination of the Assem- 
bly to prohibit theatrical exhibitions, the indefatiga- 



ble Hallam always found some new subterfuge by 
means of which he and his company could appear 
before the public without incurring the penalty of 
the law. Thus, in June, 1787, on their return from 
New York, where they had been performing, they 
opened at the Southwark, with a "Concert, vocal 
and instrumental," in which was introduced " The 
Grateful Ward ; or, the Pupil in Love," and the 
"musical entertainment" of "The Poor Soldier." 
The theatre was designated in the bills as the 
" Opera-House, Southwark." This entertainment 
was for the relief of the American captives in 

Hallam and John Henry, who were now partners, 
continued the struggle, petitioning year after year 
for authority to open a new theatre, and for the 
repeal of the law against theatrical exhibitions, in 
the mean time evading that law' by giving operas 
and musical pieces and occasionally plays, disguised 
under the title of "Lectures." Thus, "The Game- 
ster" was announced as a "serious and moral lec- 
ture, in five parts, on the vice of gaming," while 
"Hamlet" was introduced as "amoral and instruc- 
tive tale, called 'Filial Piety Exemplified in the His- 
tory of the Prince of Denmark.' " The contest came 
at last to a crisis in 1789, when a petition, signed by 
nineteen hundred citizens, asking the repeal of the 
prohibitory provision relating to theatres, was pre- 
sented to the Legislature. The religious community 
took the alarm. A remonstrance against the repeal 
of the law, signed by three thousand three hundred 
and ten persons, was taken to the Assembly by a 
committee, headed by all the ministers of the gospel 
of the Protestant sects in the city, viz., Right Rev. 
Bishop White, Rev. George Duffield, Rev. William 
Rogers, Rev. Henry Helmuth, Rev. John Meder, 
Rev. Joseph Pilmore, Rev. Ashbel Green, and several 
elders of the Society of Friends. 

Counter petitions were immediately gotten up by 
the friends of the theatre, the proceedings on their 
part being conducted by a society called " The Dra- 
matic Association," for whom Gen. Walter Stewart, 
Dr. Robert Bass, Dr. John Redman, Maj. Moore, John 
Barclay, William Temple Franklin, Jacob Barge, and 
William West, acted as a committee. 

The newspapers, as might be expected, discussed 
the question at length, and every means was used to 
arrive at a true expression of public opinion. When 
the question came up for final settlement, it was 
found that six thousand citizens had signed the peti- 
tions in favor of the theatre, and four thousand 
against it. The restrictive portion of the act was ac- 
cordingly repealed, and an act was passed authorizing 
licenses to be issued for theatrical entertainments for 
three years, and subjecting unauthorized exhibitions 
to a fine of two hundred pounds, so that improper or 
scandalous plays should not be performed. 

Hallam & Henry opened the Southwark Theatre 
on the 6th of January, 1790, with "The Rivals" and 

"The Critic." Their company consisted of Ryan, 
Vaughan, Lake, May, Harper, Wignell, Wools, Head, 
Biddell, Robinson, John Durang, Gay, Hallam, and 
Henry ; Mrs. Wools, Mrs. Henry, Miss Took (after- 
ward Mrs. Hallam), Mrs. Hamilton, and Mrs. Harper. 
Mr. Kenna, Mrs. Kenna, with Master and Miss Kenna, 
arrived from London during the season, and strength- 
ened the company. In December, 1790, when they 
reopened, some changes had taken place in this list 
of performers. Four American plays were produced 
that season: Dunlap's" American Shandyism," Trum- 
bull's " Widow of Malabar," "Constitutional Follies," 
a comedy, by Mr. Robinson, a member of the com- 
pany, and " The Recess,'" a translation and adapta- 
tion by a citizen of Philadelphia, name unknown. 
The theatre was fashionable, and the return of Con- 
gress to Philadelphia insured a good attendance. 
The season was unusually brilliant. 

Charles Durang, in his " History of the Philadel- 
phia Stage," says, — 

"The east stage-box in the South Street Theatre waB fitted up ex- 
pressly for the reception of Gen. Washington. Over the front of the 
box was the United States coat of arms. Red drapery was gracefully 
festooned in the interior and about the exterior. The seats and front 
were cushioned. Mr. Wignell, iu a full dress of black, hair powdered 
and adjusted to the formal fashion of the day, with two silver candle- 
sticks and wax candles, would thus await the general's arrival at the 
box-door entrance, and, with great refinement of address and courtly 
manners, conduct this best of public men and suite to his box. A guard 
of the military attended. A soldier was generally posted at each stage- 
door, and four were posted in the gallery, assisted by the high constable 
of the city and other police officers, to preserve something like decorum 
among the sons of social liberty, who, as Lingo says, in speaking of 
American notionB of independence, ' The very babes, uursing on their 
mothers' laps, are fed with liberty and — pap I' " 

Wignell withdrew from the company that year, 
and Henry went to England to engage new actors. 
He brought back John Hodgkinson and wife, the 
former a dashing light comedian and his wife a lively 
singing actress, Mrs. and Miss Brett (the latter after- 
ward Mrs. King), Mrs. Pownell (celebrated on the 
London stage for many years as Mrs. Wrighton), Mr. 
King, Samuel and James West, Prigmore, Chambers 
(vocalist), Luke Robbins (actor and scene-painter), 
and Floar (an ingenious machinist and property- 

The firm of Hallam & Henry was dissolved in 
1793, and Hallam formed a partnership with Hodg- 
kinson for the season of 1794. Among the attractions 
presented were the celebrated tragic actress, Mrs. 
Melmoth, the popular dancer and pantomimist, Mon- 
sieur Quesnet (already spoken of in these pages as a 
successful dancing-master), and the beautiful Madame 
Gard6, a French danseuse of merited reputation. 

This was the last season of the old Southwark or 
" American Theatre" as a fashionable theatre. 
Hallam & Hodgkinson left Philadelphia for New 
York. They felt that the old building on South 
Street had had its halcyon days, and could not com- 
pete with a rival which offered the public vastly 
superior accommodations and elegant improvements 
until then undreamt of. They were wise, for from 



that time the popularity of the Southwark Theatre 
gradually faded away before the rising glory of the 
Chestnut Street Theatre. It could scarcely have been 
otherwise; the old theatre, according to the reminis- 
cences of " Lang Syne," was "an ugly, ill-contrived 
affair outside and inside ; the stage lighted by plain 
oil-lamps without glasses. The view from the boxes 
was intercepted by large square wooden pillars sup- 
porting the upper tier and roof. It was contended 
by many at the time that the front bench in the gal- 
lery was the best seat in the house for a fair view of 
the whole stage." Such was the place where the 
most brilliant array of fashion had assembled during 
a quarter of a century. The new theatre in Chestnut 
Street was fitted up in the interior with two rows of 
boxes and a gallery above, supported by fluted Corin- 
thian columns highly gilt, a crimson ribbon twisted 
from the base to the capital. The tops of the boxes 
were decorated with crimson drapery. The panels 
were of pale-rose color, adorned with gilding. 

So the name of Hallam, which had been connected 
with theatrical affairs for the last forty years, disap- 
peared from the boards. Yet it has remained indel- 
ibly written in our annals, for if the elder Hallam be 
not entitled to the appellation, " Father of the Amer- 
ican Stage," conferred upon him by Dunlap, he has 
an undisputed right to that of " Founder of the Phila- 
delphia Stage." His son continued his work and gave 
us the best interpretations of the old English drama, 
now forsaken for the clumsy adaptations of French 
pieces by modern playwrights, who have discovered 
that it is easier to imitate than to create, and — it pays 

The old Southwark, after this, ceased to have regu- 
lar seasons, but it was opened from time to time to the 
performances of transient companies, amateurs, or 
temporary combinations of seceders from different 
companies and actors out of work. In the spring of 
1800 " The Orphans" and " The Irish Widow" were 
played at this theatre by an association of amateurs, 
called the Thespian Society. John Durang and his 
family, assisted by a few others, occupied the theatre 
in the summer months following. In August, 1801, 
a portion of the Chestnut Street Theatre Company 
announced the opening of a summer season at the 
South Street Theatre. Almost simultaneously with 
this announcement there appeared one by Messrs. 
Barrett, Placide & Robertson, who, singularly enough, 
had also engaged the theatre. The two companies, 
instead of quarreling over the possession of the stage, 
very wisely agreed to join their forces, — an advanta- 
geous combination which increased the chances of 
securing good audiences, for while the Chestnut Street 
actors were prepared for tragedy, high comedy, and 
English opera, their new associates were particularly 
strong in recitations, dancing, and pantomime, and 
they could boast of having in their ranks " that 
wonder of the world, the Antipodean Whirligig," Mr. 
Eobertson, " late from London." Robertson was a 

great attraction, and thousands viewed with never- 
ceasing wonder his great whirling feat. He appeared 
with his head protected by a sort of metallic cap, 
lined inside with felt, and mounting a strong table, 
the legs of which were made fast to the floor, he was 
fixed head downward in the centre. He immediately 
began a rotary motion of his body, increasing in rapid- 
ity until he looked more like a piece of machinery 
than like a man. "Indeed," says Durang, "he was 
so very rapid that you could not observe by the eye 
his figure ; you could only discern a perpendicular 
object like the axle of a wheel, going around with 
immense rapidity." Sometimes he would have fire- 
works attached to his heels and other parts of his 
person. Placide performed the extraordinary feat of 
playing the fiddle with the bow in his mouth, the 
instrument being held behind his back and over his 
head. There was no lack of talent in the dramatic 
company, which counted among its members Mr. 
Fullerton, from the Theatre Eoyal, Liverpool ; Wil- 
liam B. Wood, Cain, Francis, Warren, Blissett, Prig- 
more, L'Estrange, Mrs. Snowden, and Mrs. Shaw. 
During the season " The Battle of Bunker Hill ; or, the 
Death of Gen. Warren," was played in very good style. 
In July, 1802, another company, formed from the 
Chestnut Street actors, had a short season at the South 
Street Theatre. Among the plays which they brought 
out was " The Federal Oath ; or, the Independence of 
1776," a pantomimical sketch, interspersed with songs. 
In this troupe were Warren, Wood, Cain, Bernard, 
Usher, Blissett, Francis, Milbourne, Miss Westray, 
Mrs. Jones, Misses Arnold, K. Solomon, Hunt, Screven, 
and others. 

In the month'of July, 1803, Mr. McGinnis, under the 
title of " A Theatric Lounge," opened a miscellaneous 
entertainment, consisting of songs and recitations and 
scenes from " The Mountaineers," — Octavian, Mr. Mc 
Ginnis. After an unsuccessful experiment, in August, 
at a place opposite the Lombardy Garden, McGinnis 
returned to the old theatre, and brought out "The 
Virgin Unmasked," the characters in which were 
taken by McGinnis, Durang, Parsons, Shaefer, "a 
gentleman," and Mrs. Brumley. 

During the summer of 1804 there was a short season 
at the old theatre by the Chestnut Street Theatre 
Company. On the 4th of July was produced a piece 
written by James Workman, entitled " Liberty in 
Louisiana." Mr. Wood delivered an oration "in 
honor of Louisiana and the United States." The 
house was opened for a single night in October, when 
Mr. Story, from the London and Charleston theatres, 
presented " The Point of Honor" and " The Spoiled 

The Manfredi family opened this theatre in Feb- 
ruary, 1806, and gave a series of tight-rope perform- 
ances, ballets, pantomimes, etc. They were succeeded 
by a portion of the Chestnut Street Company, among 
which were Mr. and Mrs. Poe, the latter formerly 
Miss Arnold. It was then and there Spencer H. 



Cone made his first appearance on any stage. He 
played with much success Achmet, in " Barbarossa." 
Cone became a favorite afterward at the Chestnut 
Street Theatre, where he played during several sea- 
sons. In the midst of a successful career he suddenly 
left the stage and went to Baltimore, where he became 
associate editor of The American, exchanged his quill 
for a sword when the war with Great Britain broke 
out, and served as a captain of artillery ; returned to 
the stage after the restoration of peace, and again 
left it, finally this time, to become a minister of the 
Baptist Church, in which last profession he continued 
until the time of his death. Kate Claxton, one of 
the most deservedly popular actresses of a later time, 
is a granddaughter of Spencer H. Cone. 

In 1807 the first French dramatic company that 
had ever appeared in Philadelphia opened at the 
South Street Theatre for a short season, playing va- 
rieties and vaudevilles. Their advertisements show 
that they performed several good pieces of the old 
French repertoire, which required actors of a fair 
average of talent. " Le Directeur dans l'Embarras" 
(The Perplexed Manager), " L'Avocat Pathelin," by 
Palaprat, "On fait ce qu'on Peut, en non pas ce 
qu'on Veut," " Heureusement," by Bochon de Cha- 
bannes, " Le Sourd, ou l'Auberge Pleine,'' and several 
lighter pieces and farces were produced. In March, 
Manfredi came back to the old theatre, and the 
French company removed to Sicard's ball-room. 
Daudet, one of the principal actors, was the manager. 
His name and that of Monsieur Bxidan are the only 
ones that have come down to us. 

In the summer of that year John Durang opened 
at the old theatre with a company of which his three 
sons, Augustus F., Ferdinand, and Charles, and his 
daughters, Catharine and Charlotte, formed part, with 
Baillie, Taylor, Drummond, Wright, and Miss M. 
Mullen. Old Hallam, who owned the theatre, 
played occasionally. This company was considerably 
strengthened in September by the accession of Giles 
Leonard Barrett, Wilmot, McKenzie, Johnson, Wil- 
liams, Yeates, George H. Barrett, Mrs. Wilmot, and 
others. They brought out several heavy pieces. 

The name of Durang has occurred several times in 
these pages, and it is fit that it should form the closing 
chapter of the history of the old South Street or South- 
wark Theatre, with which it was so closely connected. 
John Durang was connected with Hallam's company 
ever since 1785. Engaged at first for his merits as a 
dancer, he became a useful member of the dramatic 
company. His children were brought up to the stage. 
One of his sons, Charles Durang, was born in Phila- 
delphia, and appeared for the first time in a ballet in 
1803. He was then only nine years old. He was des- 
tined to perpetuate the name of Durang in the annals 
of the Philadelphia stage long after his father had gone 
to rest in the silent city of the dead, near his old man- 
ager and friend, Hallam. Charles Durang, after being 
an actor, ballet-master, and manager, lived to write 

the history of that stage 1 of which his father had 
been one of the pioneers, and on which he himself 
had passed his life from boyhood through to manhood 
and old age, renouncing it only when his infirmities 
prevented his further prosecution of his profession. 
The " stars" of more than half a century had been his 
associates, and he had witnessed the first efforts of 
actors and actresses since famous. Who better than 
he could write a truthful, interesting narrative of 
reminiscences of the stage? He had played his part 
honorably on another stage beside that consecrated to 
Melpomene and Thalia : when the last war broke out 
between England and the United States he flew to the 
defense of his native land, and was one of the little 
garrison which guarded the six-gun battery at the 
battle of North Point, Md. This fight was immortal- 
ized by Francis S. Key's glorious song of " The Star- 
Spangled Banner,'' which was sung for the first time 
in public by Ferdinand Durang, in a building adjoin- 
ing the Holliday Street Theatre, Baltimore, Charles 
Durang leading the chorus. 

On the 10th of October, 1 807, notice was given in 
the newspapers that there would be a performance of 
" Douglas" at the South Street Theatre, " to bring 
forward a boy of thirteen, who has been for some 
time past the admiration of New York, Charleston, 
and Virginia, under the title of the 'Infant Ameri- 
can Boscius.' " Another " Infant Boscius," said to 
have been born in Wajnut Street, Philadelphia, Jan. 
18, 1802, and consequently only six years old, was 
brought forward in 1808. " Having found it impos- 
sible to get a room for exhibition," this young prodigy, 
it was announced, would " wait on families in their 
houses and give recitations.'' John Howard Payne 
was also called the "American Boscius," and he has 
been erroneously identified by some with the first 
"Infant American Boscius" of 1807. Payne, accord- 
ing to the biographical sketches of him, made his first 
appearance at the Park Theatre, New York, Feb. 26, 
1809, as Young Norval. He was then sixteen years 
old. During the spring of 1808 the old theatre was 
" opened for public amusement." The performances 
were legerdemain, balancing, ventriloquism, imita- 
tions, etc. The place must have deteriorated when 
the manager found it necessary to announce that 
" smoking cigars is not allowed in the theatre." 

An amateur association gave performances at vari- 
ous times in 1812 and afterward at the old theatre. 
This society was known as " The Moretonians," and 
took its name from John Pollard Moreton, a young 
American actor of merit, who was a native of Sara- 
toga, N. Y. He had been in India and England, 
and was brought over by Wignell to be a member of 
the first Chestnut Street Theatre Company in 1793. 
He made his first appearance in Philadelphia in 1794, 
and died in 1798. No public notice was given of 
these amateur performances. 

1 HiBtoiy of tha Philadelphia Stage, by Charles Durang. 



In 1812, Mr. Beaumont, who had been manager of 
the Edinburgh Theatre, brought out his wife's nieces, 
the Misses Abercrombie, two fine dancers. Failing 
to negotiate with Warren & Wood, managers of the 
Chestnut Street Theatre, for their appearance, he or- 
ganized a company and opened the old South Street 
Theatre. Beaumont had with him, besides his wife 
and two nieces, Mrs. Morris, Mr. Fell, Jr., Mr. 
Fisher, and James Abercrombie. During the season 
several performers of note joined this company, none 
of whom had ever played in Philadelphia. Among 
them were Mrs. Goldson, of the Haymarket Theatre, 
London ; Mrs. Eiddle, mother of Cordelia and Eliza 
Riddle ; Mr. William Jones, afterward one of the 
managers of the Arch Street Theatre ; and Joseph 
Hutton, schoolmaster and playwright. The ballet 
pantomime of " Little Red Riding-Hood" was pro- 
duced for the first time in America by this company. 

The Abercrombie sisters created such a furor by 
their admirable dancing that the managers of the 
Chestnut Street Theatre found it their interest to offer 
them an engagement, and the South Street Theatre 
season came to a close on the 30th of January, 1813. 
" The Theatrical Commonwealth," a company com- 
posed of seceders from various theatres, and which 
had been organized in New York by Twaits, opened 
the old place on the 13th of April, 1813. The mem- 
bers of this company were Messrs. Clark, Burke, 
Caulfield, and Anderson ; Mesdames Burke and Clark; 
Miss Clark, of the Charleston Theatre ; Messrs. Twaits, 
Jacobs, Fisher, Hathwell, and Fennell, Jr. ; Mrs. 
Twaits, and Mrs. Goldson. Mr. Leigh Waring and 
old Mrs. Morris soon joined the company. 

Mrs. Burke (afterward Mrs. Joseph Jefferson) made 
her first appearance in Philadelphia as Leonora, in 
"The Padlock." This lady, the mother of the two 
comedians so eminent in later times, Charles Burke 
and " Joe" Jefferson, 1 was a daughter of Monsieur 
Thomas, a planter of San Domingo. 

Probably the last performance at this old theatre 
was on the 7th of June, 1817, when Higgins and 
Bernard, who had opened it for a few nights, after it 
had remained unoccupied some years, brought out 
" Manuel," a tragedy, by Bev. C. R. Maturin, the 
author of " Bertram." The old South Street Theatre 
was destroyed by fire on the 9th of May, 1821. The 
event caused little excitement; the very existence of 
the old place was almost forgotten, — sic transit gloria 

1 There have been three actors of that name. The first Joseph Jeffer- 
son, a great favorite in his time and one of the most valuable members 
of the ChcBtnut Street Theatre company, was not only a great comic 
actor of versatile talent, but a fine singer. His son, Joseph the second, 
who played at the same theatre, was an actor of ordinary merit, but an 
artist and Bcene-paiuter. He married Mrs. Burke, and was the father 
of Joe Jefferson, third of the name — so well known for his personation 
of " Eip Van Winkle" — who has inherited his grandfather's genius, and 
moves the present generation from tears to laughter with asingle glance 
or a change of intonation, — irresistibly comic, yet never vulgar or 

An old dwelling-house on Apollo Street, running 
from South to Shippen, between Fourth and Fifth 
Streets, was fitted up in 1811, and opened as " The 
Apollo Street Theatre." It was an unfortunate 
undertaking, although the house had been prettily 
fitted up and arranged, the scenery well painted, and 
the company good, being composed of members of the 
Chestnut and Walnut Street Theatres. Among them 
were Webster (a vocalist of some reputation), Cross, 
Lindsley, Anderson, Morgan, Lucas, Legg, old Mrs. 
Morris, Mrs. Bray (formerly Miss McMullin), Miss 
Williams, Mrs. Roberts, and Mrs. Sweet. On the 
opening night an address, written for the occasion by 
a gentleman of Philadelphia, was spoken by Mr. 
Webster. Mr. and Mrs. Wilmot joined the company 
after the season commenced, but did not remain long. 
John Hodgkinson's play of " The Man of Fortitude" 
was performed there on the 19th of July, shortly 
after which the Apollo Street Theatre closed its doors 

In the year 1791 the Kenna family, which had per- 
formed at the South Street Theatre for a time, opened 
a theatre in the Northern Liberties, on Front Street, 
near Pool's bridge, and not far from the Noah's Ark 
Tavern. Being subsequently reinforced by some 
actors out of employment, they took the name of 
" The New American Company," and played tragedies 
and light pieces. Doneganni's troupe of tumblers 
and posturers, and Monsieur De Moulin's company 
of dancers afterward performed at this theatre, closing 
finally in May, 1792. 

The great event in dramatic circles in 1794 was the 
opening of the new theatre on Chestnut Street, above 
Sixth, on the 17th of February. When Thomas Wig- 
nell separated from Hallam, at the close of the season 
of 1790, he associated himself with Hugh Reinagle, 
a musician, and the two determined to establish a new 
theatre. While prepared to supply the necessary 
funds to engage the best performers from Europe and 
to procure scenery, dresses, and everything concerning 
the internal arrangements of the theatre, they required 
assistance to purchase the ground and to erect the 
necessary buildings. They proposed, therefore, to 
create a stock of sixty shares, at three hundred dol- 
lars each share. Six per cent, interest and a season 
ticket to each shareholder were the inducements 
offered. Ten shares were to be redeemed and paid 
off annually. The stock was readily taken up by the 
liberal patrons of the drama, 2 and the building was 

3 The following were the original subscribers, each for one share: 
Bobert Morris, Henry Hill, J. Swan wick, J. Swanwick (for W. Macken- 
zie), Walter Stewart, Mark Prager, Jr., J. L. (for C. Febiger), Joseph 
Rivari, Matthew McConnell, Samuel Anderson, Robert Bass, Pearson 
Hunt, Samuel Hays, William Bingham, C. Richmond, James Lyle, Wil- 
liam Cramond, Edward Tilghman, John Travis, James Cramond, John 
Ashley, Thomas M. Taylor, Oeorge Padst, Robert S. Bickley, John 
Vaughan, Thomas Fitzsimons, Michael Prager, John Duffield, Rich- 
ard Potter, John Brown, Thomas M. Willing, Matthew Saddler, Robert 
Patton, John Lenuiy, Robert Rainey, David Cay (for Andrew Clow), 
David Cay, Tnomns Rushton, James Glentworth, John Lawrence, Sam- 
uel Anderson (for a friend), John Mitchell, John Dunlap, Isaac Franks, 



commenced in the year 1791. The corner-stone was 
laid, with Masonic ceremonies, by Mr. Beinagle, who 
was a master mason. Jared Ingersoll delivered an 
address on the occasion. 

The plan of the building, which was a perfect copy 
of the Bath Theatre, was furnished by Mr. Richards, 
of London, a brother-in-law of Mr. Wignell. The 
theatre had so far progressed in February, 1793, as to 
permit of its being opened to the public for one night, 
when a grand concert, vocal and instrumental, was 
given. The interior decorations were fin- 
ished, and they excited the admiration of the 
spectators, but, outside, the building was far 
from presenting the fine appearance it did 
some years later, when the colonnade was 
added. The following description, taken 
from "The Picture of Philadelphia," by 
James Mease, M.D., will give a correct idea 
of a structure which was acknowledged to 
be the finest theatre in America at the time: 

" The theatre on Chestnut near Sixth Street was founded 
in the year 1791; aud enlarged and improved, as it now 
stands, in 1805. It presents a handsome fronton Chestnut 
Street of ninety feet, including two wings of fifteen feet each. 
The centre tmilding is ornamented with two spirited and 
well-executed figures of tragedy and comedy (by Rash) on 
each side of a great Venetian window, over which, in two 
circular tablets, are emblematical insignia. The top of this 
centre building is crowned by a pediment. The wings, 
opened by large windows, recede a little from the front 
above, but project below, twelve feet to the line of the street, 
faced with marble ; these pavilions are decorated by emblem- 
atic figures in tablets, and connected together by a colon- 
nade of ten fancy Corinthian columns. The extreme depth 
of the theatre is one hundred and thirty-four feet; the in- 
terior is judiciously and handsomely arranged. In the 
wingB are the green-rooms, dressing-rooms, scene-rooms, etc. 
Through the projecting wings or pavilions, you pass to the 
stairs of the galleries; under the colonnade, the left-hand 
door leads to the pit, but to the lioxea you ascend in front by a flight of 
marble steps, enter the lobby, and pass to the corridors which commu- 
nicate with all the boxes. Those in front of the stage are disposed in 

Charles Petti t, Thomas M. Moore, James Bead, Thomas Wignell (for a 
friend), John Swire (for J. D. A. R. N. 0. T.), Thomas Ketland, Jr., 
Griffith Evans, James Barclay, Robert Westcott, J. Swanwick (for 
James Abercrombie), Joseph Harmar, Francis West, Andrew Spence, 
A. Reinagle (for a friend), Thomas Carradine, J. Delany, Robert West- 
cott (for a friend), John Brown (for James Crawford), John Harrison 
(L. M.). 

" At a meeting of the subscribers to Messrs. Wignell & Reinagle's 
proposals for erecting a theatre, held at the City Tavern the 22d June, 
1792, in consequence of three days' previous advertisement, 

" Resolved, That Messrs. Wignell & Reinagle be authorized to open an 
additional subscription for forty shares upon the same terms and secu- 
rity as the former shares. 

" John Vaughan, Secretary pro tern. 

" Henry Hill, Chairman." 

Additional subscribers, one share each|: Charles Biddlo, D. C. Clay- 
poole, G. W. Plumsted, Edward Fox, Robert Itniney, Edw. Fox (for a 
friend), George Meade, C. Richmond (for John Wright), John Mitchell 
(for A. Caldwell), John Williams, Jr., John Williams (for Mies U. Alex- 
ander), Joseph Donaldson, John Bidwell, George Eeppele, Adam Zant- 
zinger, C. A. Bcrtier, William Stiles, Philip Nicklln, T. Goyaux de la 
Roche, John Eean, Elizabeth Bordley (by Beale Bordley),- Thomas 
Smith, Hannah Paleski, Peter Blight, Samuel Anderson (for a friend), 
John Nicholson (two shares), Thomas P. Anthony, David Pinkerton, 
John Binns, William Smith, Norton Pryor, Jr. 

[Three names in addition to those given in the first list and one name 
in the second list are left out, it being impossible to decipher them.] 

form of an amphitheatre ; the seats of the whole, with those of the pit 
and gallery, are arranged so as to give the spectator the greatest advan- 
tages. The stage occupies a front between the boxes of thirty-six feet, 
and runs back upwards of seventy-one feet. Over the stage, occupying 
part of the entablature and plafond of the front Bcene, is an emblematic 
representation of America encouraging the drama, under which are the 
words, ' For useful mirth and salutary woe.' " 

This theatre was computed to bold about two thou- 
sand persons, of which number nine hundred could 
be accommodated in the boxes. 

The company was very strong, both as to number 


and combination of talent. Wignell went to England 
in 1796, to replace some of his actors who had left 
him. Among those whom he engaged were Thomas 
A. Cooper, afterward famous as a tragedian, and 
William Warren, of equal merit as a comedian. Mr. 
and Mrs. Byrne, the dancers, also came with him. 
John A. Bernard, already in this, country, and who 
had acquired celebrity in light comedy, was engaged 
by the manager on his return. Wignell died in 1803, 
after seeing his enterprise a continued success. His 
widow entered into partnership with Eeinagle, and 
Warren and Wood became the stage managers. 

Joseph Jefferson, the elder, made his first appear- 
ance in Philadelphia at the commencement of the 
season of 1803, in the characters of Frank Oatland 
and Dr. Lenative. 

The melodrama, which for a number of years may 
be said to have almost driven regular tragedy from 
the stage, was first introduced in Philadelphia in 1804, 
when " A Tale of Mystery," by Holcraft, was produced 
at the Chestnut Street Theatre. 

Thomas A. Cooper, whose fame as a tragedian was 
now well established, came back to the Chestnut in 
1804. During the season of 1808-9 he acted twice 



a week in New York, and twice a week in Philadel- 
phia. Master John Howard Payne, afterward cele- 
brated as the author of the song " Home, Sweet 
Home," made his first appearance on the 5th of 
December, 1809. Durang says of him, — 

" His youth, figure, and beauty of features were highly prepossessing. 
But sixteen years of age, and petite in stature, yet he appeared the 
epitome of a Prince Hamlel in soul and manner. His face beamed with 
intelligence, and his bearing was of the most courtly mould. He was 
vigorous with rant; chaste, but not dull. He portrayed all the quick 
thought, restless disposition, and infirm philosophy of Hamlet with great 
judgment and tact." 

Reinagle died in Baltimore Sept. 21, 1809. A part- 
nership was then formed between Warren — who had 
married the Widow Wignell — and Wood. The firm 
of Warren & Wood continued until 1826. 

In 1811 the theatre-goers of Philadelphia were 
thrown into a fever of excitement, such as had never 
been known before, by the arrival of George Frederick 
Cooke, the English tragedian. He was engaged for 
twelve nights, and made his first appearance, on the 
25th of March, as Richard III. There were no re- 
served seats in those days, and it was not an unusual 
thing to see a servant, or some one hired for the pur- 
pose, rush into the house as soon as he could gain 
admittance, drop into some desirable seat, and occupy 
it until his master or employer came to claim it. On 
the occasion of Cooke's first appearance, which was 
on a Monday, such precautionary measures were 
of little avail. As early as Sunday evening — as 
related by Charles R. Leslie in his " Autobiography'' 
— the steps of the theatre were covered with men 
who had come prepared to spend the night there, 
that they might have the first chance of taking places 
in the boxes. Some actually took off their hats and 
put on nightcaps. When the doors were opened at ten 
o'clock, Monday morning, the street in front of the 
theatre was impassable. The rush was tremendous. 
Men literally fought their way through, coats were 
torn off the backs of their owners, hats knocked off 
and mashed ; one fellow, swinging himself up by 
means of the iron bracket of a lamp, ran over the 
heads of the crowd into the theatre. By evening the 
crowd that besieged the doors was so dense and tumul- 
tuous that it was evidentjticket-holders, and especially 
ladies, could not make their way through it without 

" A placard was therefore displayed stating that all 
persons who had tickets would be admitted at the 
stage-door, before the front doors were opened. This 
notice soon drew such a crowd to the back of the 
theatre that when Cooke arrived he could not get in. 
He was on foot, with Dunlap, one of the New York 
managers, and he was obliged to make himself known 
before he could be got through the press. ' I am like 
the man going to be hanged,' he said, ' who told the 
crowd they would have no fun unless they made way 
for him.' " 

In The Cynic, by "Growler Gruff," the following 
notice of Cooke's acting appeared in 1812 : 

11 His Richard III. was received with shouts. His death-scene was 
truly appalling. As he lifted his left arm over his forehead, and gave 
the last withering look at Richmond— the expression of his eyes as they 
for a moment vividly rolled, then became fixedly glazed, and all visiou 
seemed gone — was peculiar, and thrilled the audience. His style was 
quiet, but astonishingly impressive. Yon felt everything he did. The 
face fixed your attention at once. The words that followed riveted 
your attention, and absorbed all objects else. Your mind dwelt on 
naught beside. You did not see Cooke. You only saw the charactt-r. 
He never lost the feeling of his part. The coloring of the passion was 
preserved in graphic tints to the end. We think that Kean bottomed 
much of his GUts'ter on that of Cooke. The basis of bis acting bore a 
strong resemblance. But Eean made more detached points. In action 
he was more of the melodramatic school. Their performances were 
alike, yet distinct." 

The receipts on Cooke's first night were $1348.50. 
The highest receipts during his engagement were 
$1434 ; the lowest, $778. He was re-engaged for four 
nights, with as good results. In the succeeding 
month Cooper and Cooke played together. The 
highest receipts were, on the first night, $1604 ; the 
lowest, $1183. These were large receipts when the 
prices were, — Box, $1 ; pit, 75 cents ; gallery, 50 cents. 

Durang says that " the performance of ' Othello' 
was the most magnificent effort ever witnessed on the 
American boards. It never has been surpassed to 
our recollection." 

In the season of 1812-13, John Duff made his first 
appearance in Philadelphia ; he was then a handsome 
young man, scarcely over twenty-one years of age ; 
his wife (Miss Dyke), a sister of the wife of the poet, 
Thomas Moore, was about eighteen, and very beauti- 
ful. She played light parts. In her more mature 
womanhood she revealed herself as one of the finest 
tragic actresses that ever trod the American stage. 
In the same season Holman and his daughter, Miss 
Holman, were among the Chestnut Street stars. 

James N. Barker's play of " Marmion" was brought 
out during the following season, with Duff as Marmion. 
The feeling toward Great Britain was not very friendly 
at that time, for all saw impending war in the diffi- 
culties then existing between the two countries. Re- 
sistance to England formed the theme of " Marmion," 
and the sentiments expressed by the Scots found an 
echo in the breasts of the Americans. Hence an inci- 
dent, as related by Durang, which occurred on the 
first night the piece was played. The scene was 
between King James and Marmion. Gen. John Bar- 
ker, the father of the author, was seated in the stage 
box. King James replies to Marmion as follows: 

" My lord I my lord ! under such injuries, 
How shall a free and gallant nation act? 
Still lay its sovereignty at England's feet — 
Still basely aBk a boon from England's bounty — 
Still vainly hope redress from England's justice? 
No 1 by our martyred fathers' memories. 
The land may sink, but, like a glorious wreck, 
'Twill keep its colore flying to the last I" 

Old Mr. Barker, swinging his cane over his head 
and rising up in the box, exclaimed, " No, sir ! no ! 
We'll nail them to the mast, and sink with the Stars 
and Stripes before we'll yield !" This patriotic effu- 
sion brought the audience to their feet, and the shouts 



and applause continued for upward of ten minutes. 
When, at last, the actors could proceed with the scene, 
every patriotic sentiment they uttered was received 
with rounds of applause. " Marmion" became a 
very popular piece which never failed to draw a good 

The success of George Frederick Cooke had awak- 
ened a desire among English actors of note to cross 
the ocean in order to win the plaudits of American 
audiences and, what was still more acceptable, a re- 
spectable pile of American dollars. This laudable 
desire has been perpetuated since, and the parabolic 
course of the " stars" which shoot annually from the 
theatrical heavens of the Old World is invariably 
directed to the United States. Success is not always 
certain, however, as Mr. Betterton, of the Covent 
Garden Theatre, discovered in 1817, when he came 
to the Chestnut. He had been, at one time, consid- 
ered the first among great English actors, but he 
failed to make an impression on the Philadelphians. 
The Chestnut Street company counted enough able 
singers among its members to give vocalists a good 
support, so the operas gave as much satisfaction as 
the comedies. Henry Wallack made his first ap- 
pearance as Don Juan, in " The Libertine," a musical 
play adapted to the music of Mozart's opera, in De- 
cember, 1818. Mr. Jefferson, as Leporello, sustained 
him with excellent effect. James Wallack appeared 
as Rolla on the 8th of January, 1819. He played 
Macbeth, Hamlet, Shylock, and some melodramas 
during his engagement, and created great excitement. 
Kobert C. Maywood, of the Theatre Royal, Drury 
Lane, followed the Wallacks, and played with success 
the first-class parts of Shylock, Othello, and others. 
Mrs. Bartley, a tragic actress of great reputation in 
England, played a two weeks' engagement in Feb- 
ruary. Her husband, who accompanied her, played 
comedy parts, such as Falstaff, Puff, etc. The season 
closed on the 13th of April, with John Howard 
Payne's tragedy of "Brutus." In October, 1819, 
Arthur Keene, a lively young Irishman, with a very 
fine voice, but utterly ignorant of musical notes, com- 
menced an engagement and played in several musical 

This season, which closed on the 27th of March, 
1820, was the last of the fine theatre erected by Wig- 
nell & Beinagle. The company had gone to Balti- 
more, when, on Easter Sunday night, April 2d, the 
building was totally destroyed by fire. An old eight- 
day clock, an antique mirror, and the old sick-chair 
which was used in the business of the stage, were the 
only articles saved from the flames. The wardrobe 
destroyed included the principal part of Lord Barry- 
more's private wardrobe, court costumes, and costly 
dresses. The beautiful drop-curtain, which was the 
admiration of every artist and connoisseur, was lost. 
It was the work of Wignell's brother-in-law, the cele- 
brated Eichards, and was commonly called " Richard's 
Drop." The subject was a Grecian triumphal arch, 

with a most exquisitely -wrought Italian sky in the 
perspective, relieved with variegated foliage. 

The burnt-out company went to the Olympic The- 
atre in the fall of 1820. Meanwhile the stockholders 
adopted means to have the Chestnut Street Theatre 
rebuilt without delay. They created new stock, at 
six hundred dollars per share, which was readily 
taken, and they contracted with the able architect, 
William Strickland, for the construction of the new 
building. On the 2d of December, 1822, the new 
theatre opened with " The School for Scandal" and 
" The Wandering Boys ; or, the Castle of Olival," with 
a very strong cast. 

There was some criticism upon the design of the 
theatre, particularly the front, which was said to show 
architectural incongruity. Thus said "Microsmus 
Philadelphicus," — 

"Its columns Corinthian, in Italy sculptured, 
Attest how tbe arts 'mongst ourselves have been cultured ; 
Fluted off and got up without flaw or disaster, 
What a shame they omitted to flute the pilaster ! 
Their arrangement is neat, and supporting — but, rot it ! — 
A pediment, only the builder forgot it I" 

The niches in the wings were decorated with the 
statues of Tragedy and Comedy, cut by Rush, which 
were in front of the first theatre when destroyed, but 
which were saved from the wreck. They had much 
spirit and expression. 1 

Junius Brutus Booth made his first appearance at 
this theatre on the 17th of February, 1823. Little 
was known about him ; he was from the Royal Drury 
Lane Theatre, he had had a contest in London with 
Edmund Kean, he had come to America and had 
played an engagement in Richmond, Va., — that was 
all. The Philadelphia public, which had applauded 
so many stars that had come heralded by the trum- 
pets of fame, but which also had shown discernment 
in not always accepting as' 1 great" all who came thus 
heralded, failed to discover the mighty power of this 
unknown man, who was soon to be recognized, in 
Philadelphia and elsewhere, as one of the most suc- 
cessful tragedians on the American stage. 

Durang says of Booth's first engagement, — 

" Junius Brutus Booth made his first bow to a Philadelphia audience 
with very poor prospects of success. Nobody knew anything about him, 
nor did anybody seem to care for him. His reception whs extremely 
lukewarm. The house was poor, the applause was poorer. A few saw 
merit. The verdict of his jury was ' No go !' During his engagement 
he played Richard III., with which he opened, Sir Edward Mortimer, Sir 
Giles Overreach, King Lear, Reuben Glenroy, Octavian, and Orestes, in ' The 
Distressed Mother.' These he played with his UBtial excellence, win- 
ning moderate applause from those who were present, but not drawing 
large houses, such as were due to his merit and great excellence." 

1 The niches not being very deep, Mr. Rush was compelled to treat 
the figures somewhat as if they were in high relief. They showed from 
the wall of the niche the front and about three-fourths of the body. 
The backs could not be finished, and the sculptures, which were of wood, 
actually presented nothing but a shell. But so skillfully and effectively 
waB the work done that the spectator, who was ignorant of the device, 
could not, from the view taken from the street, suppose that the figures 
were not solid and complete. When the theatre was taken down, in 
1854, these masks were sold to Edwin Forrest, and were placed by him 
In his library. Since his death they have been removed to the Actors' 
Home, near Holmesburg. 



The day was not distant, however, when the great 
tragedian was to conquer this indifference of the 
public, and change it to a lasting admiration of his 
genius. The season of 1823-24 commenced on the 
2d of December, Booth going through an engage- 
ment with a moderate degree of success. But in 
January, 1824, a performance was to be given in aid 
of a fund to assist the Greeks in their war against the 
Turks. The matter was under the control of a com- 
mittee of leading citizens. Booth volunteered his 
services to play Hamlet. They were accepted. Sym- 
pathy with the Greeks was general, and in conse- 
quence the house was crowded by an unusually intel- 
ligent audience, many coming for the sake of the 
Greeks, who had never seen Booth, and did not care 
who played Hamlet. The effect produced by the 
wonderful rendering of this part, one of the most 
difficult among the creations of Shakespeare, can 
only be described by the word " astonishment." The 
spectators were not prepared for this sudden revela- 
tion of genius ; it burst upon them and carried 
them by storm. When the play ended there was 
neither misgiving nor doubt : Junius Brutus Booth 
was recognized as a tragedian without superior. 
Henceforth he could always be sure of a full house 
and enthusiastic audience. The public made ample 
amends for its past indifference. 1 

Previous to this victory of Booth's, that is, in Feb- 
ruary and March, 1823, that most humorous of come- 
dians, Charle3 Mathews, played seventeen nights to 
crowded houses. He had just concluded a long and 
successful engagement in New York, and so many 

1 In 1827 there appeared at the Chestnut Street Theatre a young man 
by the name of Delarue, who had a peculiar talent for imitating the 
style of other actors. His most successful imitation was that of Booth, 
owing to his perfect resemblance with the latter. In size, features, 
voice, and action he was his perfect counterpart, and the resemblance 
even went farther, for he was very eccentric. It was rumored, probably 
with no better foundation for the story than this astonishing feat of 
nature, that Delarue was Booth's natural son. Rues, in his " Life of 
Edwin Forrest, 1 ' tells the following anecdote of Delarue: 

"On another occasion, in company with several gentlemen, Forrest 
visited the 'Castle of St. Angelo.' Originally it was called the Mau- 
soleum of Hadrian, a rounded pyramid of white marble. For a while 
they stood entranced, so much to see, so much to admire and com- 
ment upon. All around them were the traces of former greatness. 
Rome, with its majestic ruins; Home, in the solemn grandeur of its 
churches and palaces; Borne, with its endless treasures; Rome, with 
its Church of St. Peter's, built at the expense of the whole Roman world ; 
Borne, the glory of modern architecture, loomed up before them. The 
Pantheon, the most splendid edifice of ancient Borne; the Vatican, the 
palace of the Pope, all these were more or less visible to the eye as they 
stood gazing in wonder and awe. In one of the pauses of their conver- 
sation a voice came up from behind a ruined column bearing upon its 
surface the impress of ages, saying, 'Mr. Forrest, have you been to see 
the ruins of the Coliseum?' Forrest turned around at these words to 
see from whom they proceeded. There, lying at full length on another 
pillar, was a young man whom none of tho party knew. He went on, 
' It is a splendid ruin, sir I They say it held one hundred thousand 
people.' 'You know mo, it seems?' said Forrest. 'Know you? Why, 
certainly! Don't you remember Delarue? I played Richard III. at 
the Walnut Street Theatre in imitation of Mr. Booth.' 'What! you 
here? Get up, man, and let me have a good look at you.' Up jumped 
the ecceutric individual; and as he stood before the group he appeared 
a fac-simile of the great tragedian he could imitate so admirably." 

anecdotes of his wit and mimic powers had appeared 
in the newspapers that every one was anxious to hear 
him. His success was immense. After his departure 
the English burletta of "Tom and Jerry" was brought 
out for the first time, Jefferson playing Bob Logic. 

In January, 1824, Mr. Pearman, an English vocalist, 
played, with moderate success, an engagement of two 
weeks, during part of which Vincent De Camp, a 
brother of Mr. Charles Kemble, acted with him. 
Conway, a London actor, appeared toward the end of 
the season ; he did not justify the appellation of 
"'great," with which he had been announced. The 
succeeding season was opened by Booth as Richard 
III. He was followed by Clason, from the Theatre 
Royal, Drury Lane, but who was a native of New 
York. Clason displayed no extraordinary ability as 
a comedian. The event of the season was the pro- 
duction of Von Weber's " Der Freischiitz," with the 
original overture and choruses. The orchestra was 
doubled in size. The parts, sung by the regular 
actors of the company, were well rendered, yet " Der 
Freischiitz'' did not draw more than four or five 

Stanislaus Surin, whose success in the management 
of the Tivoli Garden has already been noticed, leased 
a large building, which had been erected for a cotton- 
factory, on Prune Street between Fifth and Sixth, and 
fitted it up as a theatre. This house was opened in 
1820, under the name of the Winter Tivoli Theatre, 
and ran two seasons with fair success. The company 
was very well composed. There were Charles S. 
Porter, a talented actor, who was afterwards a mem- 
ber of the Chestnut Street Theatre, and at one time 
manager of the Arch Street Theatre; James H. 
Caldwell, a fine actor, and a man of uncommon abil- 
ity, who in after-years became manager of the St. 
Charles Theatre in New Orleans, and introduced gas 
into that city, of which he was elected alderman and 
subsequently mayor ; Mrs. Williams, who afterward 
became the wife of Robert C. Maywood, one of the 
managers of the Chestnut Street Theatre ; Mrs. 
Riddle, a well-known actress, the mother of Mary 
and Eliza Riddle, two beautiful girls. Eliza mar- 
ried Joseph M. Field, an actor, who became a hu- 
morous writer, and was editor of the <Sif. Louis Re- 
veille. The well-known writer, Kate Field, is their 
daughter. Beside these, there were in the company 
Messrs. McCleary, Laidley, Bard, Campbell, Thorn- 
ton, Morrison, Mestayer, Parke, Still, Hall, Bloom, 
Simpson, Klett, Mesdames Mestayer, Still, Allen, and 
Miss French. "The Mountain Torrent," a new 
American drama, by S. B. Judah, of New York, was 
brought out on the 20th of December, and " The 
American Captive ; or, the Siege of Tivoli," by a gen- 
tleman of Boston, was played for the first time April 
5, 1821. Mr. Adatnson, from the Theatre Royal, 
Bath, made his first appearance as Peter, in " The 
Stranger," and Mrs. Smith made her first appearance 
as Adelgitha. Among the actors who strengthened the 



company the second season were Joseph Hutton, play- 
wright; John Augustus Stone, who afterward wrote 
the tragedy of " Metamora ;" Messrs. Herbert Wil- 
liams, Bloxton, Sinclair, Klett, Mrs. Higgins, Miss 
Riddle, and others ; Misses C. and K. Durang ap- 
peared in fancy dances ; Adamson and Stamp sang 
comic songs. Mr. and Mrs. Pelby joined the company 
toward the end of the season. Stone brought out 
" Montrano ; or, Who's the Traitor," an original drama 
of his composition. Louis De Hebrach also produced 
an original drama, " Oolaita ; or, the Indian Heroine." 

In 1822, Charles S. Porter assumed control of the 
Winter Tivoli Theatre, and opened it under the 
name of the City Theatre. Mr. Porter was stage 
manager, and in the company were Messrs. Meer, 
Mestayer, Forbes, Hamilton, Webb, D. Eberle, 
Irwin, Klett, Mrs. Smith, Mrs. Mestayer, and . others. 
This was not a very successful enterprise. Porter had 
no ambition to make another trial, and at the end of 
the season the history of this theatre was closed. 

Pepin & Breschard, who had built the circus at 
the corner of Walnut and Ninth Streets, bought 
additional ground and enlarged the building in 1811, 
so as to combine stage and ring performances. The 
house was opened on the 1st of January, 1812, and 
called the " Olympic Theatre.'' On this occasion 
Mrs. Beaumont, a fine English actress, made her first 
appearance, supported by Mr. Knox, of the Park 
Theatre. The theatrical company was good, and the 
equestrian performances brilliant. The first season 
was a fair success, but the second was bad and came 
to a premature ending. Pepin & Breschard had gone 
heavily in debt to build the theatre, and creditors 
were pressing. Finally, the whole establishment was 
sold by the sheriff on the 5th of February, 1813. 
Pepin & Breschard opened the house once more in 
the month of August following, for circus perform- 
ances only. In 1814, Twaits' Commonwealth Com- 
pany played there a short, unprofitable season. Ex- 
cept for some rope-dancers' exhibitions, the house 
remained unoccupied until August, 1816, when Pepin 
& Co. opened it for equestrian, pantomime, and ballet 
performances. In November, West's splendid circus 
company, from England, made their appearance at 
the Olympic. Ferdinand Durang made quite a hit 
in " Timour the Tartar." In the spring of 1818 the 
Alexandria and Washington theatrical companies, 
under Managers James H. Caldwell and James En- 
twistle, made a coalition with Pepin, and opened the 
Olympic for the performance of light pieces and 
dramas in which horses could be used, with occa- 
sional variations in the ring. In 1818 a stock-com- 
pany was formed, at Pepin's suggestion, to purchase 
the theatre property and make necessary repairs and 
improvements. One hundred and sixty-nine shares 
of two hundred dollars were subscribed. 1 The follow- 

1 The whole number of shares subscribed for originally was one hun- 
dred and ninety-five. This number was reduced in 1821 to one hundred 
and sixty-nine, and it was then agreed that the association should con- 

ing-named trustees were to hold tte property for the 
benefit of the association : Dr. John Redman Coxe, 
William Meredith, and Frederick Ravezies. William 
Meredith was chosen president ; Frederick Ravezies, 
Richard Ashhurst, John R. Neff, John Meany, John 
Swift, and William Montelius, superintending com- 
mittee ; George Davis, secretary and treasurer. 

The season of 1818-19 was not a very profitable 
one. Among the new performers who appeared this 
season was Mr. Lamb, of the English Opera-House, 
London, who was afterward with Coyle (the scene- 
painter), manager of the Chestnut Street Theatre; 
John Green, subsequently famous in Irish characters ; 
and John Blair, also an Irish comedian, came out 
during the season. 

The house was not reopened after this until the de- 
struction of the Chestnut Street Theatre, in 1820, led 
to the leasing of the Olympic by Warren & Wood. 
The house, refitted and improved by the lessees, was 
opened on Nov. 10, 1820, as " The Walnut Street 
Theatre," a name by which it was, except during a 
brief period, afterward popularly known, although 
during the several years that Francis C. Wemyss 
was manager he called it "The American Theatre." 
A memory forever connected with the Walnut Street 
Theatre was the appearance upon its boards, during 
that first season, of the great tragedian of whom 
America, and more especially Philadelphia, will 
ever be justly proud. On the 27th of November 
it was announced that Young Norval would be per- 
formed " by a young gentleman of this city." His 

tinue until the 1st of June, 1828. The following were the shareholders : 
Richard Ashhurst, Laurence Astolfi, Samuel Allen, John Benners, Peter 
Bousquet, John Binns, John Breban, John Bernard, John L. Baker, 
Thomas Bloxton, George E. Blake, Joseph Beylle, John Byerly, Samuel 
Badger, Thomas Brown, James N, Barker, William Bargh, Richard 
Bache, Edward Barry, John R. Coxe, Edward D. Corlield, Anthony 
Chardon, George H. Cooke, William Campbell, Edmund T. Crawley, 
Isaac P. Cole, Charles Carpenter, Jr., Dauiel B. Charpentier, Clement E. 
Chevalier, Fortune Clapier, John M. Chapron, Robert Desilver, John T. 
David, Lewis Duval, Simon Dance, Joseph Donath, Louis de la Croix, 
George Davis, Thomas Desilver, Lewis Desauque, Lewis Desauque, Jr., 
William Delany, John Dutton, John Ducker, Leonard Englebert, Adolph 
EhringhanB, John J. Edwards, Andrew Farionlh, Peter Gaudichauld, 
Thomas Hope, Wilson Hunt, John Hart, Peter Hutz. Alexander Hamp- 
ton, George Harrison, William Irwin, John Jackson, John Knox, Am- 
brose LauBatt, John Leadbeater, James Lyle, Paul Lajus, John Meany, 
Horatio L. Melcher, Anthony Michel, Jr., Charles Magner, Jacob Mar- 
tin, Henry Meyers, Charles Mercier, Samuel A. Mitchell, Thomas S. 
Manning, Robert P. McCnlloh, James P.Moore, James Maxwell, James 
J. R. Malanfant, Richard McKenzie, "Willinm McDonough, Louis R. F. 
Marotti, John U. Meynie, Alexander McCalla, William Montelius, Wil- 
liam Meredith, Johu R. Neff, Stephen F. Nidelet, Matthew Newkirk, 
Bayso Newcomb, James Nixon, Eleazar Oswald, William A. Peddle, 
George Pfeiffer, Richard C. Potter, James Potter, Joseph Randall, Fred- 
erick Ravezies, John Rea, Richard S. Risley, Joseph Robard, William 
Renshaw, William W. Smith, John Swift, Frederick Secltle, James W. 
Sproat, Thomas Sergeant, William T. Stockton, Benjamin Sharpnack, 
David Seegor, William Short, Joseph Sovelinge, John Sibber, Mrs. Ann 
Townes, Anthony Teisseire, John C. Tlllinghast, John B. Wallace, 
Charles C.Watson, Reuben M. Whitney, Robert Welford, Samuel H. 
Williams, William Woods. The largest number of these subscribers 
were generally owners of one or two shares. Ann Townes had sixteen 
shares; Louis R. F. Marotti, ten shares; John R. Neff, ten; Adolph 
Ehringhaus, six ; Richard Ashhurst, six ; Richard C. Potter, four ; John 
Swift, four. 



performance met with such success that he repeated 
it on the 2d of December. On the 29th of the same 
month was presented " Lovers' Vows,'' altered from 
Kotzebue by Mrs. Inchbald, — " Frederick, by the 
young gentleman who performed Douglass." On the 
6th of January, 1821, a benefit was given to the 
debutant, which was announced to be " for Master 
Forrest's benefit." The play was " The Mountain- 
eers," Octavian, Master Forrest. The playbill said, — 
'' After the play ... an epilogue, in the character 
of a harlequin (written by Dr. Goldsmith), will be 
spoken by Master Forrest." 

Edwin Forrest was then fourteen years of age. 
He was born in George Street [now Guilford Street], 
in a small frame house, bearing No. 51. 1 His father, 
William Forrest, was runner for the old United States 
Bank. Little Edwin was 
employed for a time in the 
office of the Aurora news- 
paper, which he left to go 
to a cooper-shop. There, 
it is said, he was in the 
habit of turning a tub up- 
it, and making speeches 
to the great amusement of 
the workmen. We after- 
ward hear of him as a 
youthful clerk in the store 
of Baker & Sons, impor- 
ters, Race Street. But his 
passion for the stage was 
too strong, and he joined 
a Thespian society. He 
is said to have appeared 
at the old South Street 
Theatre in the part of 
Rosalia De Borgia in 
the melodrama of " Ru- 
dolph;" then, in 1817, at 
the Apollo Theatre as 
Lady Anne in " Doug- 
lass," and subsequently as 

Young Norval at the Tivoli Gardens. Howbeit, his 
first appearance on a regular stage was at the Walnut 
Street Theatre. In this theatre he also made his 
last appearance on the stage in Philadelphia in 1871. 
His first appearance as a "star" was at the Chestnut 
Street Theatre July 5, 1826, as Othello. He had had 

1 Mr. Bernard Reilley says in a communication to the DinputcJi, "I 
and my family moved into that house on the day that the great ship 
* Pennsylvania' was launched at the navy-yard, and lived thereuntil 
the 7th of March, 1844, when it was burned down. Several horses were 
also burned in a neighboring stable. I think it was in the winter of 
1839 that Mr. Forrest and a lady came in, and she, taking a look at the 
bumble appearance of the place, with a smile, said, 'So, Ed, this is the 
house you were born in Y He replied, ' This is the house. 1 Oue of my 
little boys was playing on the floor. Mr. Forrest inquired if he, like* 
wise, was born in that house. My wife answered in the affirmative. 
He then put bis hand in his pocket and gave the child a silver dollar." 

a varied experience of the stage, however, before he 
attained such eminence. He had gone West after his 
debut in Philadelphia, and had played Shakesperian 
tragedy, low comedy, negro characters, and had even 
joined a circus company as a rider and tumbler, 
— a strange prelude to the honors he was to win in 
the service of the tragic muse. Mr. Forrest died on 
Dec. 12, 1872, in the fine house at the corner of Broad 
and Master Streets, which he had bought in 1855, 
when he resolved to retire into private life. This 
resolve was broken in 1860, when he was prevailed 
upon to return to the stage, but he kept his much-loved 
Philadelphia home, and he died, as he had wished, 
in the city of his birth. He left his fortune to less 
fortunate members of his profession, for the Edwin 
Forrest Home, at Spring Brook, was " instituted for 
the support and mainte- 
nance of actors and ac- 
tresses decayed by age 
or disabled by infirmity, 
etc." A noble foundation 
perpetuating a name al- 
ready too famous to be 

Two days after young 
Forrest's benefit another 
notable event happened 
at the Walnut Street 
Theatre, — Edmund Kean 
made his first appearance 
in Philadelphia in the 
character of Richard III. 
At first he did not make 
a very great impression ; 
people remembered the 
inimitable rendering of 
Richard by George Fred- 
erick Cooke, and the com- 
parison was not favorable 
to Kean ; but as the play 
went on, the great actor's 
power revealed itself, and 
the rapturous applause 
which greeted the last scenes was a final verdict 
from which there was no appeal. The fourteen 
nights of his engagement and two benefit nights 
which he played were so many triumphs. Kean came 
back in April, and played a second engagement; It 
was very successful until the last night, when " Venice 
Preserved" was given, Kean playing Jaffier. Kean 
must have been taken with a sudden fit of insanity, or 
he had been drinking more than was good for him, 
for Durang, describing the incident, says, "He com- 
menced Jaffier in a very impressive manner, but soon 
fell into eccentric contrasts, doing strange things, so 
palpably nonsensical that the audience, especially the 
box portion, began to wince, and at length to express 
disapprobation more decidedly." Kean perceiving 
this, treated this manifestation with such offensive 



hauteur that hisses and cries of '03! off!' came 
from every part of the house. Availing himself of a 
lull in the general uproar, the infuriated actor ad- 
dressed the audience in the most insulting manner, 
calling them ' cowards' and other hard names. He 
had raised a tempest, and pretty soon he had to seek 
safety in flight. A riot ensued, and the lights had to 
be put out before it could be quelled." 

That Kean had " a bee in his bonnet" is well known. 
During his second visit to America he played at Que- 
bec. Four Huron chiefs who had witnessed his mag- 
nificent acting were introduced to him, and expressed 
their admiration. Mutual compliments followed ; 
Kean presented each of the noble savages with a silver 
medal, and they proposed to him to become a member 
of their tribe. He accepted, and was dubbed a Huron 
chief, under the high-sounding name of Alantenaida 
(or Alantenoidet, as some have it). 

Dr. Francis, an ardent friend and admirer of Kean, 
furnishes an interesting sequel to this incident : 

"Some time after, not aware of bis return to the city, I received a 
call to wait upon an Indian chief by the name of Alantenaida, as the 
highly-finished card left at my house had it. ... I repaired to the hotel, 
and was conducted up-stairs to the folding-doors of the hall. ... I en- 
tered, aided by the feeble light of the moon ; but at the remote end I 
soon perceived something like a foreBt of evergreens lighted up by many 
rays from floor-lamps, and surrounded by a stage or throne, and seated 
in great state was the chief. I advanced, and a more terrific warrior I 
never surveyed. Red Jacket (or Black Hawk) was an unadorned, sim- 
ple personage in comparison. Full dressed, with skins tagged loosely 
about his person, a broad collar of bear-skin over bis shoulders, his leg- 
gings with many stripeB, garnished with porcupine quills ; his mocca- 
sins decorated with beads, his head decked with the war eagle's plumes, 
behind which flowed massive black locks of disheveled horsehair ; 
golden-colored rings pendent from the nose and ears, streaks of yellow 
paint over the face, massive red daubings about the eyes, with various 
lines in streaks about the forehead, not very artistically drawn. A 
broad belt surrounded his waist, with tomahawk ; his arms, with 
shining bracelets, stretched out with bow and arrow, as if ready for a 
mark. He descended his throne, and rapidly approached me. His eye 
was meteoric and fearful like the furnace of the Cyclops. He vocifer- 
ously exclaimed, ' Alantenaida 1' I was relieved. It was Kean I" 

The eccentric actor had his portrait painted in full 
Huron costume, and had visiting-cards made with his 
own English name engraved on the one side, and his 
Indian name, with a miniature likeness of himself in 
Huron dress, on the other. In later years this portrait 
puzzled many people, who thought that it was in- 
tended to represent the actor in some Indian charac- 
ter performed by him on the stage. The following 
anecdote, in connection with this portrait, is told 
by W. Grattan, in a note to the " Life of Edmund 

"When I first called on him at Humman's, one day early in 1827, he 
was sitting up in his bed, a buffalo-skin wrapped around him, a huge, 
hairy cap, decked with many-colored feathers, on liia head, a scalping- 
knife in his belt, and a tomahawk in his hand. He was making up his 
face for a very savage look, a tumbler-glass of white-wine negus stood 
at his bedside, two shabby-looking heroes were close by, with similar 
potations within reach, and a portrait-painter was placed before an easel 
at the window, taking the likeness of the renowned Alantenoidet, — a 
name in which the chieftain (most sincerely) rejoiced. I was announced 
by a black boy in livery. I saw Kean's eye kindle somewhat, perhaps 
with pleasure, at my visit, but more so, I thought, from the good oppor- 
tunity of exhibiting himself in his savage costume. He gave a fero- 

cious roll of his eyes and a flourish of his tomahawk, then threw off his 
cap and mantle, and cordially shook me by the hand. The painter 
quietly retired and the satellite visitors soon followed," etc. 

After Kean's first engagement in Philadelphia, 
Mrs. Allsop, a daughter of the celebrated Mrs. Jor- 
dan, of Drury Lane, played a round of light comedy 
characters at the Walnut Street Theatre. Then came 
Mrs. John Barnes, the leading heavy-tragedy lady of 
the Park Theatre. Her engagement was renewed 
when her husband, John Barnes, joined her, playing 
low comedy and eccentric characters. About the 
same time, David C. Johnson, a native of Philadel- 
phia, made his first appearance on any stage at the 
Walnut Street Theatre. Mr. Johnson afterward be- 
came celebrated as a designer, caricaturist, and en- 
graver. For some years he published annually, under 
the title of " Scraps," a very popular series of comic 

At the opening of the season of 1821-22, Warren 
& Wood's company was strengthened by the perform- 
ances of Mrs. Bloxton, Mr. and Mrs. Burke, Mr. and 
Mrs. H. Wallack, and Mr. Nicholson, of the Charles- 
ton Theatre. The latter made his first appearance on 
the 15th of November as Count Belino in " The Devil's 
Bridge." William Pelby made his first appearance 
on the 21st of November as Macbeth, and played Holla, 
Bertram, Hamlet, Pierre, and Brutus. The tragedy 
of " Damon and Pythias" had a run of four nights. 
" Undine" was performed for the first time on the 
1st of January, 1822. Edwin Forrest made his 
fifth appearance in Philadelphia on the 2d of Febru- 
ary, as Zaphna, in " Mohammed the Impostor." Le 
Basse and Tatin, French dancers and pantomimists, 
appeared three nights in a ballet, and the first ele- 
phant that had ever trodden the boards of a Phil- 
adelphia stage appeared as a star of the first mag- 
nitude in the " Forty Thieves." The season closed 
on April 23, 1822, and Warren & Wood closed their 
lesseeship of the Walnut Street Theatre, to prepare 
for the opening of the new Chestnut Street Theatre. 
During this last season they had bought many new 
plays, among which were the tragedy of " De Mont- 
fort ; or, the Force of Hatred ;" " Yusef Caramalli ; 
or, the Siege of Tripoli ;" " Marion ; or, the Hero of 
Lake George," and " She Would be a Soldier," both 
by M.M.Noah; and "The Spy; or, Neutral Ground," 
by a gentleman of New York. 

Stephen Price and Edmund Simpson, lessees of the 
Park Theatre, New York, now leased the Walnut, 
refitted it for equestrian performances, in order to 
bring out a circus company, they having brought out 
West's circus stock, and restored the old name, "The 
Olympic," to the theatre. They opened with an 
equestrian and dramatic company, and produced sev- 
eral good pieces during a season of about twelve weeks 
closing the house four days before the new Chestnut 
Street Theatre was opened. William C. Drummond 
formerly of the Chestnut Street Theatre, was stage 
manager ; Lawson was master of the circle, and John 



Parker was ballet-master. Among the equestrians 
were Yeamans, Tatnall, and Walter ; Williams, slack- 
rope dancer and clown ; Mrs. Williams, slack-wire 
dancer and pantomimist ; Champlin, balancer and wire- 
dancer. A novel attraction which created great ex- 
citement was the bareback act without saddle or bridle, 
by Hunter, an English equestrian from Astley's Am- 
phitheatre, London. This feat had never been seen 
before, and was considered wonderful. It drew crowds 
to the Olympic. Tatnall, a member of the company, 
with his pupil, Charles La Forrest, undertook to find 
out if the feat was as difficult as it appeared. They 
practiced in secret, and succeeded much more easily 
than they had expected. Tatnall then proposed to 
perform the feat in the ring with his pupil. Hunter 
took exception at this, and complained to Price & 
Simpson, at New York, and Tatnall and La Forrest 
were prohibited from undertaking the bareback act. 
Tatnall made an appeal to the public, and succeeded 
in creating a strong feeling in his behalf. On his 
benefit night, having the right to make up his own 
programme, he introduced the bareback act, proving 
that an American rider could perform any feat at- 
tempted by an English equestrian. 

James Roberts, afterward a very popular comic 
actor, made his first appearance on any stage, during 
the season, in a piece written by himself, in which he 
gave imitations of popular actors. 

When the season of 1823 opened, Simpson & Price 
being still the managers, George Blythe, formerly 
director-general at Astley's, was director of the ring, 
and Daniel Reed acting as manager ; William Law- 
son was succeeded as riding-master by Asten. The 
company was nearly the same as in the previous year. 
William Dinneford, from London, a young actor, 
joined the theatrical company. Master Turner, after- 
ward a popular equestrian, made his first appearance. 
The two novelties this season were a melodrama, 
called "Ali Pacha; or, the Greek Struggle for Lib- 
erty," brought out by Hunter for his benefit, and a 
patriotic drama, called "The Two Sisters; or, the 
Heroines of Switzerland," written by W. Barrymore. 
Another season was opened in the fall, with the same 
company. Joseph Cowell was the chief manager, 
under Price & Simpson, during the fall season of 
1824. The melodramatic manager was Mr. Gale ; 
equestrian-master, George Blythe ; ring-masters, Law- 
son and Rogers ; prompter, T. Honey ; ballet-master, 
John Parker ; scene-painters, Henry Wilkins and 
Henry Isherwood. The latter was an artist of no 
mean talent, and the new landscape scenery which 
he painted was much admired. James Stoker, a 
slack-rope performer, horrified the public by a new 
trick, hanging himself by the neck as if he were on 
the gallows. Although this repulsive exhibition was 
denounced, it did not fail to draw the crowd to the 
Olympic, — a morbid taste for the horrible will always 
exist among the masses. "Lafayette; or, the Castle 
of Olmutz," by Samuel Woodworth, of New York, 

was performed on the 1st of October. " The Cata- 
ract of the Ganges" was brought out in grand style, 
real water being introduced on the stage. At Cowell's 
benefit the play, so popular in London, of " Tom and 
Jerry" was brought out. Roberts made a hit in the 
character of Bob Logic, which was the foundation of 
his popularity. 

The spring season of 1825 was short and unimpor- 
tant ; there being no theatrical company, the perform- 
ances were limited to equestrian feats and pantomimes. 
The fall season, however, presented a more varied 
programme by a stronger company. Among the en- 
gagements for the circus were Collingbourne, a native 
of London, who was a dancer and pantomimist; 
Master Collet, a rider and performer of boys' parts in 
melodramas; James Kirby, of Drury Lane Theatre, 
clown and scene-painter; John Hallam, comedian, 
who made his first appearance in this theatre as Joe 
Steadfast, in " The Turnpike Gate ;" Palmer Fisher 
and his wife, the latter afterward Mrs. E. N. Thayer; 
Miss Aspinall, a dancer, and Harry Moreland, a 
vocalist, who afterward married her. 

The great success of the season was the harlequinade 
of " The Talking Bird," which was produced on the 
14th of October. The scenery, which was very beau- 
tiful, was painted by Kirby and Williams. Kirby 
acted two parts in the play, The Talking Bird and 
the clown. Durang says of this piece, " The scene of 
' The Dancing Waters and the Bird's Palace' was a 
supernatural ideal of Paradise. The entire scene 
revolved in the multitudinous colors of the kaleido- 
scope. The wings reflected transparent water pyra- 
mids and water-flowers, all revolving in various colors. 
The machinery of this piece was never surpassed in 
this country, if indeed equaled." 

The familiar old name of " Walnut Street Theatre" 
was restored to the Olympic, the house was entirely 
rearranged and fitted up, and was opened by Inslee & 
Blake on the 1st of January, 1829. It is now the 
oldest theatre in Philadelphia, the old Chestnut Street 
Theatre having been torn down in 1855. The limits 
of this chapter will not admit of more than a cursory 
notice of the other places of amusement established 
after 1825. 

Washington Museum Theatre, in Market Street, 
east of Second, was opened by Archbold, May 27, 
1826. On the 23d of June, of the same year, Arch- 
bold opened the Pennsylvania Museum Theatre, iu 
Market Street above Eighth, south side, but aban- 
doned it after one month's experiment. 

Maelzel's Hall was opened in 1827, in a portion of 
the old Lailson Circus, on Fifth Street. It was fitted 
up expressly for Monsieur Maelzel, mechanician, artist 
in automaton figures, etc., who had one of the most 
complete collections ever exhibited. The principal 
exhibition was that of Napoleon's expedition to 
Moscow, embracing the marching of the troops, the 
battles and skirmishes, the occupation of the city, its 
abandonment, and its destruction by fire. This place 



was afterward occupied by Titus, June & Angevine's 
Menagerie. It was injured by fire about 1845. 1 

Arch Street Theatre was opened in Arch Street, 
west of Sixth, north side, by William B. Wood, on 
the 1st of October, 1828. It was built by Haviland, 
the architect, 2 had a handsome front, and was well 
fitted for a theatre, with a seating capacity of fifteen 
hundred. The interior was torn out and rebuilt, and 
the house reopened Sept. 12, 1863. At various times 
it was under the management of Jones, Duffy, For- 
rest, and William E. Burton. 

Washington Amphitheatre and Circus, old York 
road, above Buttonwood Street, was opened in 1829 
by Fogg & Stickney. 

In 1834 the Sansom Street Circus, in Sansom Street 
above Eighth, was opened by Weeks. 

In October of the same year Joseph Jefferson, Jr., 
opened the Northern Exchange Theatre, in Third 
Street below Green. 

In 1835 the Hall of Industry was opened at Fot- 
terall's Hall, northwest corner of Fifth and Chestnut 
Streets. It was afterward known as the American 
Museum, J. H. Myers, manager. This place was 
burned down in December, 1854. It was rebuilt and 
occupied as Thomeuf 's Varieties, 1856-59. 

On Nov. 7, 1836, the Pennsylvania Theatre, in 
Coates Street, west of Second, north side, was opened 
by Logan & Wemyss. 

Cooke's Equestrian Circus, on Chestnut Street, 
below Ninth, was opened by T. Cooke on the 28th of 
August, 1838.. Cooke's company performed there for 
some time, then it was taken to Baltimore ; there it 
suffered heavy losses in horses, costumes, etc., by the 
burning of the Front Street Theatre, where it was 
playing. Cooke came back to Philadelphia with the 
remnants of his stock, and performed at the Walnut 
Street Theatre. In the mean time William E. Burton 
fitted the circus on Chestnut Street for dramatic per- 
formances, and opened it in August, 1840, as the 
National Theatre. A correspondent sent to the Dis- 
patch some years ago the following interesting 
reminiscence of the opening night : 

"I was one of five hundred or more persona who squeezed them- 
selves into the cheapest part (the pit) of the National Theatre, in 
Chestnut Street, below Ninth, when it was first opened by William B. 

1 The large factory building of the Tathams, lead-pipe manufacturers, 
now occupies the site. 

2 The question having been raised some years ago as to whether the 
Arch Street Theatre was built by Strickland, a correspondent wrote as 
follows to the Philadelphia. Dispatch : 

" In a Philadelphia guide-book, published by Oarey & Hart in 1830-31 , 
is a description of the Arch Street Theatre. The compiler says, ' Mr. 
Strickland was the architect of this beautiful theatre, which was first 
opened on the 1st of October, 1828.' ' The Album,' published in 1828 or 
1829, has an engraving of the Arch Street Theatre, and I am sure 
Strickland is mentioned as the architect. Strickland was the architect 
of the capitol at Nashville, Term. In constructing the dome of that 
building he left a niche for his sepulchre. He died at Nashville, April 
7, 1854, and hia remains were placed there in accordance with his request. 
On a slab in the dome ia this inscription,— ' William Strickland, archi- 
tect of this building, born at Philadelphia, 1787, died at Nashville, April 
7, 1854.' " 

Burton, on the 31st of August, 1840. I give the date because I pre- 
served the playbill, and have it now. It cost me 'three levvies* to get 
into the pit, which now, being called the parquet, is considered the best 
partof the theatre. The play was 'The Rivals,' in which Burton did 
Bob Acres, Richings, Captain Absolute, and Tom Placide, Fag. Charlotte 
Cushman made her first appearance In this city as Lydia Languish, and 
her pretty sister, Susan, as Julia. The after-piece was ' A Roland for an 
Oliver,' The Hon. Alfred Eighftt/er, Mr. Richings; Maria Darlington, 
Charlotte Cushman, 'with a song' (what do you think of that 7), 'When 
Harmony Wakens.' Burton abolished ^the old green curtain, and in- 
troduced instead a canvas curtain representing the American flag, 
painted in drapery style by W. Russell Smith. It was very showy. But 
the act-drop was one of the most beautiful things I have ever Been. I 
do not consider that it was excelled by (lie effective drop at the Academy 
of Music, painted by George Heilge, who in this proved his merit. The 
subject was 'The Cottage of Claude Melnotte, on the Lake of Como.' 
There was chance to introduce the finest landscape effects. The beauty, 
the clearness of the water, the rich foliage of the shore, the rocks, the 
mountain peaks, and all the accessories were splendid. Tbe sky had 
the effect of distance and clearness. It seemed as if you could see the 
scenery of the lake and shore stretching out for miles. When this mag- 
nificent picture was unrolled at the end of the first act of ' The Rivals,' 
it came down aud opened so unexpectedly in its beauty that the whole 
house was startled — I think I may use the word — by the unexpected 
effect. Tbe audience sat as if spell-bound for a moment or two, when 
simultaneously, as if actiog under command, there broke forth such 
peals of applause that the sound was perfectly deafening, and it was kept 
up for a long time. The triumph of the artist must have been the moat 
gratifying of his life." 

Burton was not successful in his enterprise. He 
failed, and was sold out by the sheriff. The magnifi- 
cent act drop, — which had met with an accident, 
having been torn in two, but had been mended so as 
to conceal effectively the rent — was brought to the 
hammer, and was purchased for the use of the Walnut 
Street Theatre. The " National" subsequently be- 
came Welch's Amphitheatre, and was quite successful 
in that line of performance. It was destroyed by fire, 
July 5, 1854. On the same evening the Philadelphia 
Museum building, at the northeast corner of Ninth 
and Sansom Streets, was burned down. 

The year 1839 saw the opening of the Assembly 
Buildings, corner of Tenth and Chestnut Streets. 
This place was burned March 18, 1851, but was re- 
built and reopened in 1852. 

McAran's Garden Theatre, Filbert Street, between 
Seventeenth and Eighteenth Streets, was opened 
June 13, 1840, by Ward & Mcintosh. The Athe- 
naeum Museum and Theatre, afterward known as 
Barnum's Museum, at the southeast corner of Sev- 
enth and Chestnut Streets, was opened by Taber & 
Co., Dec. 25, 1845. It was burned down on the 30th 
of December, 1851. 

The Academy of Fine Arts, or Peale's Museum 
Theatre, Masonic Hall, Chestnut Street, between 
Seventh and Eighth, was opened by John Sefton in 
August, 1846. It closed in July, 1847. " The com- 
pany at this little theatre was a superior one, and 
nowadays would be called ' a star company.' Among 
the members were Joseph (' Kip Van Winkle') Jeffer- 
son, John Sefton, David P. Bowers, John E. Owens, 
Barney Williams, Charles Burke, half brother of 
Jefferson, and a better comic actor than the latter, 
with his wife, one of the liveliest actresses of the 
day, E. N. Thayer, Mrs. Russel (afterward Mrs. John 



Hoey), Miss Mary Gannon, Miss Mary Taylor, Mr. 
and Mrs. Charles Howard, and others. This splendid 
galaxy could be seen at any time at this theatre for 
twenty-five cents. 

Sansom Street Hall, opened in 1848 for concerts, 
balls, etc., was closed as a place of amusement in 

T. V. Turner & Co. opened the American Circus, 
on Fourth Street, between Brown and Poplar, in Jan- 
uary, 1849. 

The Melodeon was opened in 1852 in the old Boli- 
var Hotel building, on Chestnut Street, between Sixth 
and Seventh, north side. In 1854 it became Wood's 
Museum, and was opened on the 17th of December 
by Col. J. H. Wood. It was destroyed by fire in 

Ballard & Stickney opened a menagerie and circus 
on Walnut Street, west of Eighth, in December, 1853, 
which afterward became Welch & Raymond's Circus, 
and, still later, the Continental Theatre. This theatre 
was destroyed by fire June 19, 1867, and was rebuilt 
the same year. The City Museum Theatre, on Cal- 
lowhill Street, between Fourth and Fifth, was opened 
by Ashton & Co. on the 11th of September, 1854. It 
was burned, also, on the 25th of November, 1868. 

National Hall, Market Street, between Twelfth 
and Thirteenth, was opened on Jan. 8, 1856, with a 
concert given by the Musical Union. In November, 
1862, it was fitted out as a circus, and opened by 
Gardner & Hemmings. In 1873 this place was turned 
into a theatre, and opened, October 21st, by J. H. 
Johnson & Co., under the name of the Olympic 
Theatre. It was burned Jan. 29, 1874. Jayne's Hall, 
Chestnut Street near Seventh, was also opened in 
1856 with a concert. 

The National Guards' Hall, on Race Street, between 
Fifth and Sixth, opened with a ball and promenade 
concert, Nov. 17, 1857. McDonough's Gaieties, on 
Race Street, between Second and Third Streets, was 
opened by J. E. McDonough, Jan. 19, 1859; the fol- 
lowing year it opened as McDonough's Olympic 
Theatre. The Theatre of Art was opened by J. San- 
derson, in Jayne's Commonwealth Building, north 
side of Chestnut Street, between Sixth and Seventh. 
This place is now used for business purposes. 

The new Chestnut Street Theatre, on Chestnut 
Street, between Twelfth and Thirteenth, north side, 
was opened on the 26th of January, 1863, by William 
Wheatley. The interior of this theatre was rebuilt 
in 1874. 

Adam Forepaugh opened the Philadelphia Circus 
and Menagerie, on the southwest corner of Tenth and 
Callowhill Streets, Nov. 27, 1865. In the same year 
a private amateur company opened the Amateurs' 
Drawing-Room, on Seventeenth Street above Chest- 
nut. On the 29th of May, 1867, Horticultural Hall, 
Broad Street above Spruce, opened with a floral 
exhibition. On the 18th of September of the same 
year, Tunison & Parsons opened the Philadelphia 

Opera-House, on Seventh Street below Arch. The 
name was afterward changed to " Seventh Street 
Opera-House," later, to " Philadelphia Opera Com- 
ique," and finally to " Adelphi Variety." The build- 
ing was originally the Second Presbyterian Church. 

•The Arch Street Opera-House, on Arch Street west 
of Tenth, which had been opened by Simmons and 
Slocum on the 20th of August, 1870, was burned on 
the 20th of March, 1872. It was immediately rebuilt, 
and reopened Aug. 26, 1872. The American Museum, 
Menagerie and Theatre, at the northwest corner of 
Ninth and Arch Streets, was opened Nov. 23, 1870, 
by Simpson, Camcross & Dixey. This place after- 
ward became Wood's Museum. On the 17th of 
December, in the same year, Robert Fox opened 
Fox's New American Theatre, on Chestnut Street 
between Tenth and Eleventh, north side. Another 
theatre, Harmonie Hall (German), was opened at that 
time in Coates Street, near Seventh, by the Maenner- 
chor Musical Society. Its existence was brief, it being 
destroyed by fire March 8, 1871. Sanford's Opera- 
House, Second Street, above Poplar, was opened in 
1871 by S. S. Sanford. It had scarcely commenced 
the season when it took fire and was burned down, 
Oct. 17, 1871. 

Thus, from 1799 to 1871, nineteen theatres, circuses, 
and museums were destroyed by fire, being over one- 
third of the total number of such places opened 
during that period, and a little less than one-fourth 
of all such places of amusement, together with music 
halls that existed at any time since 1749. It is a 
remarkable fact that so many fires in places of public 
resort were not attended by any loss of life among the 
audiences. Rensselaer Albert Shephard, an actor, was 
caught in the falling ruins of the National Theatre, 
Chestnut Street, July, 1854, and burned to death. 



In olden times, such a thing as the modern hotel, 
with its fashionably-dressed and all-important clerk, 
its vast smoking-room, carpeted parlors, gilt mould- 
ings, and other luxurious appointments, was un- 
known. The modest inn accommodated " man and 
beast," and the jolly landlord welcomed the wearied 
traveler, — and fleeced him, too, when the occasion 
offered, — and an active, bright-eyed barmaid waited 
on him, and provided those simple comforts, — a pipe, 
a pair of slippers, a glass of hot punch or a tankard 
of foaming ale, and a cosy corner near the tap-room 
fire. If the cloth was coarse it was generally white 
and clean, at least in respectable establishments, and 
the plain deal table groaned under the weight of 



viands which, if they presented no great variety, were 
well cooked and wholesome. Our fathers were great 
eaters and stout drinkers, and there was no need of 
a French menu and wines with high-soundiDg names 
to whet their appetites; roast beef, a leg of mutton, 
ham and cabbage, a fat fowl, were the solid dishes 
laid before them ; ale, port or Madeira wine, and a 
glass of Jamaica ruin and hot water to top off, left 
them in a pretty good condition to find sleep on the 
clean bed, — sometimes a hard one, — prepared for them 
in the small room, whose bare floors, whitewashed 
walls, and plain curtains, did not invite dreams of 
palatial splendors. 

The tavern, though it accommodated guests with 
bed and board, had more of the character of a drink- 
ing-house. The inn was rural in its origin, the 
tavern originated in the city, and was frequented not 
merely by topers and revelers, but by quiet citizens, 
bachelors having no fireside, of their own, and men 
of family who went there to meet neighbors and 
discuss business or the news, while enjoying a quiet 
glass and pipe. The ordinary was an eating-house, 
something between the restaurant and the boarding- 
house of our day. Coffee-houses, so called, which 
dispensed intoxicating drinks as well as the fragrant 
decoction of the Arabian bean, made their appear- 
ance later ; they were but taverns in an aristocratic 

Philadelphia had quite a large number of these 
establishments for a city of its size, yet this fact was 
not due merely to the drinking habits of the inhabi- 
tants. It is more truly accounted for by the surpris- 
ingly rapid increase of the population from immigra- 
tion during the first half of the eighteenth century, 
and the continual influx of strangers during and after 
the Revolution. These people had to be provided 
with food and lodging. It was a paying business, and 
many embarked in it. Nor does the increase in the 
number of taverns indicate an increase in drunken- 
ness. We have related in another chapter the com- 
plaints and fears of the serious-minded citizens of 
ante-Revolution times, that the people were fast 
becoming a community of drunkards, yet, during 
those trying years of the war of independence, 
although folly and extravagance were the marked 
characteristics of fashionable society, there is nothing 
to show a greater tendency to intemperance. After 
the war, when the era of peace and prosperity com- 
menced, quite the reverse is apparent. Through 
some unexplained cause or influence the people have 
turned to the ways of temperance, and there is not 
more drunkenness — not as much, perhaps — in Phila- 
delphia than in any other large city in the Union. 

Many interesting memories are attached to the old 
taverns and inns, important events and illustrious 
names are connected with the history of many of 
them, others awaken a curious interest by their 
quaint signs and rhymed mottoes and sentiments. 
They form part of the history of the city, and should 

not be forgotten. The generation which saw the 
most of them is fast passing away, and for the facts 
concerning some of those mementoes of a time not 
yet very distant, we have already to rely on tradition. 
The oldest inn or tavern in Philadelphia was the 
Blue Anchor, built by George Guest in 1682, at least it 
" was not finished (says R. Proud) at the time of the 
proprietor's arrival" (in that year). It was there 

[From an old drawing in Philadelphia Library.] 

William Penn landed, the first house in which he 
broke bread on the soil that was to be Philadelphia. 
This house was the southwestern one in a row of 
houses on Front Street, which was known as " Budd'a 
Long Row.'' It formed what is now the northwest 
corner of Front and Dock Streets. It was subse- 
quently called the " Boatman and Call." 

The next oldest, probably, was the Penny Pot- 
House, at Front and Vine Streets, it being also built 
at a landing to which it gave its name. It was a 
two-story brick house of good dimensions. It was 
still standing in the earlier part of the present cen- 
tury, but the name had been changed to the Jolly 
Tar Inn. In the year 1701, William Penn set forth 
and ordained that "the landing-places now and here- 



[From an old drawing in Philadelphia Library.] 

tofore used as the Penny Pot-House and Blue Anchor 
shall be left open and common for the use of the 
city." There were other houses of entertainment 
opened, however, very soon after William Penn's 
arrival, for in a letter, written in 1683, he says, " We 
have seven ordinaries for the entertainment of 
strangers and workmen that are not housekeepers, 



and a good meal is to be had for sixpence sterling." 
How fast the number of taverns and drinking-houses 
increased after the incorporation of the city is shown 
by the grand jury reports. In 1709 many tippling and 
disorderly houses were presented ; in 1714, thirty-five 
true bills were found, in one session, against un- 
licensed taverns; in 1744, there were upward of a 
hundred houses licensed ; in 1752, there were a hun- 
dred and twenty taverns with licenses, and one hun- 
dred and eighteen houses that sold rum by the quart. 
During all this time, and until 1759, justices of the 
peace heard and decided causes at public inns, and 
the Common Council itself had held its sittings occa- 
sionally in those places. 

The first public-house designated as a "' coffee- 
house" was built in Penn's time by Samuel Carpen- 
ter, on the east side of Front Street, probably above 
Walnut Street. That it was the first of its kind, the 
only one, in fact, for some years, seems to be estab- 
lished beyond doubt. It was always alluded to in 
old times as " ye Coffee-House." Samuel Carpenter 
owned also the Globe Inn, which was separated from 
the Coffee-House by a public stairway running down 
from Front Street to Water, and, it is supposed, to 
" Carpenter's wharf." The Coffee-House was a great 
place in those early days ; it was there the ship-cap- 
tains and merchants congregated to discuss the com- 
mercial and political news, and many interesting 
scenes must have taken place there of which no 
account has been preserved. 


Facing the Stato-House, on Chestnut Street. 

Clark's Inn, the Coach and Horses, was in Chestnut 
Street, opposite the State-House, before the Revolu- 
tion. Here assemblymen, Governors, and public 
officers, with judges, perhaps, refreshed themselves in 
the good old times. 

Enoch Story's Inn, at the sign of the Pewter Platter, 
which gave its name to Pewter Platter Alley, was a 
place much frequented by the young bloods in Gov- 
ernor Evans' time, and was the scene of many a bac- 
chanalian revel. It was there young Penn and his 
friends had the fight with the watch which led to 
their being presented by the grand jury. 

The Crooked Billet Inn, on the wharf above Chest- 
nut Street, was the first house entered by Benjamin 

Franklin when he came to Philadelphia in 1723. It 
was already an old house. Not so old, however, as 
the Indian King Tavern, in High Street, near Third. 
This house, which was famous in its time, was selected 
by Franklin and his friends as the club-house of the 

The Three Crowns Tavern, in Second Street, adjoin- 
ing the City Tavern, was celebrated for its excellent 
table and perfect management under the supervision 
of the worthy hostess, Mrs. Jones. Entertainments 
were given there to Richard Penn and other Gov- 
ernors. Peg Mullen's " Beefsteak House," on the 
east side of Water Street, at the corner of Wilcox's 
Alley, was another house celebrated for its cookery. 
Mr. Watson was informed by the late Col. Morris that 
it was the fashionable house in his youthful days. 
Governor Hamilton and others held their clubs there. 
The Freemasons held their lodge meetings at Mrs. 
Mullen's, which was also a favorite place for public 
entertainments and meetings of societies. 

The Loudon Coffee-House has been described at 
length in another chapter. Its successor in the 
public favor was the City Tavern. This house was 
finished in 1773, and was advertised as a new house 
in Second Street, near Walnut. It was intended to 
be kept as a genteel tavern. " It contains several 
large rooms, two of which, thrown into one, makes a 
room fifty feet long. Also several lodging-rooms." 
Inquirers were requested to address their communica- 
tions to Hugh James. In 1774 it was advertised that 
the. long room at the City Tavern was divided into 
boxes fitted with tables and elegantly lighted. 

On his arrival in Philadelphia, on the 4th of Sep- 
tember, 1774, Gen. Washington supped at the " New 
Tavern," which was then kept by Mr. Smith. " On 
Monday, 5th of September, 1774," says Mr. Bancroft, 
"the members of Congress, meeting at Smith's Tavern, 
moved in a body to select a place for their delibera- 
tions." On the 20th of October, in the same year, " a 
grand entertainment was given by the Assembly of 
the province to all the delegates from the different 
provinces, at this time in the city, at the New 
Tavern." 1 It was at the City Tavern Monsieur 
Gerard, the first accredited representative of France 
near the government of the United States, gave his 
grand entertainment in honor of Louis XVI.'s birth- 
day. At the time of the riot known as the Fort 
Wilson affair, the friends of James Wilson assembled 
at the City Tavern and sent word to President Reed 
of the danger apprehended. When the rioters com- 
menced their demonstration, they marched first to the 
City Tavern, expecting to find there some of the 
obnoxious merchants. The gentlemen had already 
left the tavern, and the baffled party went up to 
Wilson's house. 

The bull's head was a very common sign. There 
were several houses of that name in existence at 

1 Christopher Marshall's Diary. 



different periods. In 1704 the Governor, attended 
by several members of the Council, met the repre- 
sentatives of the lower counties, " where they were 
met at the Bull's Head in Philadelphia." Mr. Watson 
surmises that this was probably in Strawberry Street 
or the one west of it. The " Bull's Head Inn" in 
Second Street, north of Poplar Street, has an inter- 
esting memory attached to it. Thomas Leiper had 
connected his quarries on Crum Creek with Ridley 
Creek by a railway, evidently the first ever con- 
structed in this country. He invited several gentle- 
men to meet him at the " Bull's Head," and there, in 
the yard of the inn, he exhibited the plan of his 
railway. Professor Robert M. Patterson, Callender 
Irvine, and John Glenn were among the interested 
citizens present on this occasion. "Reading Howell 
was the engineer, and the original draught of the 
railway was made by John Thomson, a native of 
Delaware County, whose son, the late John Edgar 
Thomson, president of the Pennsylvania Railroad 
Company, not long ago presented it to the Delaware 
County Institute of Science." * 

The Aurora of Sept. 29, 1809, devotes an editorial 
to this interesting exhibition. 

The Indian Queen, on the east side of Fourth 
Street, below Market, was another ancient inn. Some 
time after 1800, Woodside painted a new sign for it, 
which was in his best style. There was another old 
Indian Queen Inn, a favorite place of resort, which 
was more generally named the Centre House, from 
its being near Centre Square. In 1803 it was kept by 
Samuel Hoffman, and at some other time by Job 
Whipple. The Indian Queen Inn first mentioned was 
kept before 1800 by John Francis, who again took 
it in 1803, when he left the Union Hotel. It was after- 
ward kept by Samuel Richardet ; then, at later periods, 
by Robert Smith, Margaret Thompson, and James 
Coyle. In 1822, Thomas Heiskell was proprietor. 

Fort St. David's Inn, the old tavern at the Falls of 
Schuylkill, had on its sign a representation of the 
fish-house of Fort St. David's, which was near by. 

The Wigwam, out Race Street by the Schuylkill, 
which was at one time the resort of the St. Tammany 
Society, obtained a new name in consequence of its 
connection with that association ; but it was injured 
considerably in attraction by having been made a 
hospital and place of refuge during one of the yellow 
fever seasons before 1800. 

The Lemon-Tree, also called the Wigwam, was on 
the west side of Sixth Street, and extended from Noble 
to Buttonwood Street, and westward nearly to Seventh. 
William Wray was the keeper of the Wigwam. James 
Harvey became the proprietor in 1812. It was kept 
by Bartholomew Graves, who was a famous Democrat. 
The Lemon-Tree was the headquarters of butchers 
and drovers, and was the scene of political meetings, 
ox-roasts, and Fourth of July dinners. 

1 TowDBend Ward, in Pennsylvania Magazine, No. 16. 

In 1804 Rowland Smith established a new Wig- 
wam in Spring Garden, on North Sixth Street, not 
far distant from the Lemon-Tree. On Nov. 15, 1806, 
upon an occasion of some popular demonstration, the 
weather was unusually stormy, yet there were three 
hundred Democrats present, who were kept warm by 
the Wigwam being closed on all sides to keep out the 
weather, and being floored over and warmed with 
stoves. On this occasion Dr. Michael Leib presided, 
and Stephen Girard gave a barrel of gunpowder to be 
blown away by the cannon as salutes in honor of the 
toasts. Enos Eldridge succeeded Smith as landlord 
in 1807, and Mrs. Saville afterward became proprie- 

Harry Epple's Inn, in Race Street, was a fashion- 
able resort during the Revolutionary period. An 
assembly party was given there, which was graced by 
Mrs. Bingham's presence. Washington, it is chroni- 
cled, was an occasional guest at Epple's, so was 
Louis Philippe d'Orleans, while he lived in Philadel- 
phia. The George Inn, at the corner of Second and 
Mulberry Streets, was the stopping-place of the New 
York and Baltimore mail coaches. The sign repre- 
sented St. George on horseback, armed with a long 
spear, killing a dragon. It was kept at one period 
by John Inskeep, who was for a time mayor of Phila- 
delphia. But the most celebrated of its landlords was 
Michael Dennison, an Englishman, who had the name 
of "the biggest landlord in the city." Mr. Denni- 
son's genial disposition and his solicitude for the 
comfort of his guests made him very popular with 
traveling Englishmen and Americans. " Lang Syne" 
furnished Mr. Watson with some reminiscences of 
the " George," among which were the following lines 
of poetry made upon Dennison's giving up business 
to return to his native England. These lines were 
published in vol. i. of Watson's " Annals of Phila- 

" Hia bulk increased by ale and venison, 
Alael we Boon must lose good Dennison. 
City of Penn, hia lose deplore, 
Although with pain his bulk you bore ! 
Michael, farewell 1 Heaven speed thy course, 
Saint George take with thee and thy horse ; 
But to our hapless city kind, 
The watchful Dragon leave behind. 
Michael ! your wealth and full-spread frame 
Shall publish Pennsylvania's fame. 
Soon as the planks beneath you crack, 
The market shall be hung with black. 
Michael I her stores might sure content ye ; 
In Britain, none boast greater plenty ; 
The Bank shall with the market join, 
To weep at once, — thee, and thy coin ; 
Thy guineas, ranged in many a pile, 
Shall swell the pride of Britain's Isle ; 
Whilst England's Bank shall smiling greet, 
The wealth that came from Chestnut Street." 

The Black Bear Tavern, on the southeast corner of 
Fifth and Merchant Streets, was a well-known old 
place, much frequented by the farmers, for whose 
convenience there was a large yard on the Merchant 



Street side, where they could put up their wagons. 
The " Butchers' Arms," at the old drove-yard, was 
on the north side of Vine Street, between Lawrence 
[now Franklin] and Eighth Streets. The site is now 
occupied by the Star Brewery. 

The names and figures of certain animals were to be 
found on many signs. They seemed to have been 
specially adopted by innkeepers in America as well 
as in England. The "' white horse" and the " black 
horse," "black" and "white bears;" lions, red, 
white, and blue ; bulls and bull's heads, were very 
common. But there were other subjects of a more 
local or national interest, and a still greater number 
presenting quaint devices, the whimsical creations of 
the sign-painter, and generally accompanied by some 
suggestive doggerel rhymes. The sign-painter of 
olden time was often an artist of no small merit. 
Woodside's signs were famous. Matthew Pratt, a 
native artist who had studied under Benjamin West, 
at London, painted many of these signs with an 
artistic execution that would have made them worthy 
of a place in a picture-gallery, but in those days pic- 
ture-galleries were not common, and artists found their 
best patrons among the tavern- and store-keepers. It 
is said that the equestrian figure of Frederick the 
Great, on the sign of the King of Prussia Inn, was 
painted by Gilbert Stuart in one of his eccentric spells. 
He permitted the painting to be used as a sign, with the 
understanding that his name should be withheld. 
Some years later the landlord, or his customers, did 
not think Stuart's picture suggestive enough, and an 
" improvement" was decided upon. A painter was 
hired, who, like the schoolboy who writes under his 
first attempt at copying nature, " This is a horse," or 
" This is a cow," painted under the Prussian hero's 
portrait the words, " The King of Prussia Inn." 

One of Matthew Pratt's most famous signs, perhaps 
the best for the artistic skill displayed in the execu- 
tion of so vast a subject, was the picture of the Con- 
vention seated in Independence Hall, which he 
painted for the " Federal Convention of 1787" Inn, 
kept by Hanna, and afterward by George Poppal, at 
No. 178 South Street, between Fourth and Fifth. 
The figures in this picture were striking likenesses 
of the members of the convention. In the Portfolio 
of 1824 this sign was thus described:* 

"The room itself was correctly represented as it stood at tlie time — 
richly wainscoted, with pedimentB over the doors, and Ionic pilasters 
supporting a full entablature of the order beneath a coved ceiling — 
though all these appropriate accompaniments of a public apartment 
have since been taken down by some ruthless commissioner of repairs, 
to be replaced with naked walls and meagre door-cases, which now dis- 
appoint the expectations of those who viBit this memorable council- 
chamber, which has not been inaptly denominated ■ the cradle of Ameri- 
can independence,' and which ought to have been scrupulously preserved 
in its pristine state to future ages. On one side of this highly-interest- 
ing historical composition the President, George Washington, was seen 
in the chair, under the lofty central panel at the east end of the room, 
which was then ornamented with the arms of Pennsylvania. On bis 
right, Judge Wilson occupied the chair with that imposing air which 
was natural to him, and which had strongly impressed the delineator; 
while on his left, and immediately under the eye of the spectator, sat 

the aged Franklin in his arm-chair, which must have been placed so 
near the bar that the venerable sage, then in his eighty-third year and 
suffering under a peculiar infirmity, might approach his seat in the 
sedan-chair he had bought in Europe, and which was the only mode of 
conveyance he could then support. On the other sideof this contempo- 
raneous memento the House was depicted in committee, and no particu- 
lar feature of the scene is now recollected, but on both sides was in- 
scribed the following quaint prognostication of their patriotic exertionB, 
which has since been so happily fulfilled, — 

" ' These thirty-eight men together have agreed 
That better times to us shall very soon succeed. 1 " 

In the begiuning of the century there stood on 
Second Street, between Race and Vine Streets, an 
ancient tavern, with the sign of the "Federal Pro- 
cession," commemorating the great procession of the 
4th of July, 1788. 

As was natural, the name and portrait of Gen. 
Washington were among the most popular sign- 
symbols. The oldest, probably, was that of the Gen- 
eral Washington Hotel, started immediately after the 
war by Capt. Jacob Mytinger, who had served under 
Washington. It was in Vine Street, between Second 
and Third. Capt. Mytinger kept this house until 
1793, when he died of the yellow fever. 

The Washington Tavern, at the corner of Sixth 
and Carpenter [now Jayne] Streets, was opened 
about 1790. Who was its first landlord does not 
appear, but in 1795 it was kept by Lewis Young. 
In 1810, Peter Evans became the landlord. He was 
succeeded in 1815 by James Stell. In 1822 it was 
leased by John Chase, who changed its name to the 
New Theatre Hotel. Woodside painted a handsome 
sign for the hotel, which represented Warren in the 
character of Falstaff. Beneath the figure was in- 
scribed the appropriate quotation, "Shall I not take 
mine ease in mine inn ?" How, by a third transfor- 
mation, the old Washington Tavern became the 
"Falstaff Inn," is thus told by a correspondent in 
the Dispatch : 

" Chase did not keep the place very long, and we are not able to trace 
the succession of the subsequent tenants. Its principal uses were in 
routing its rooms for arbitrations, the use of juries, audits, and other 
legal proceedings, and as a meeting-room for societies. There was only 
one occupant of this tavern who could have made it anyways famous, 
and that was William Warren, the actor, who, after he had fallen into 
the Bere and yellow leaf, and had ceased to be a manager of the Chestnut 
Street Theatre, was induced to lease the Falstaff Inn, in the expectation 
thathe mightdoagood business there. It was a mistake. Even Warren 
could not draw to the house such a custom as would make it worth while 
for him to remain. He was there but a short time. This was about 
1830. He afterward kept a tavern in Baltimore, and died, in 1832, at 
Washington. Isaac Anderson kept this tavern in 1834 and for some 
years afterward. In time the original Woodside sign of the Falstaff 
faded out. It was replaced by a plain, painted board, on which were 
the words, ' Falstaff Inn.' This was succeeded by a new painted sign, 
which was so roughly done that it was not to bo compared with the old 
work of Woodside, and might be justly denominated a daub. It is prob- 
able that the persons who put up that sign never had seen the old one. 
The motto, so very appropriate, and which poor Warren perhaps thought 
would induce patronage enough to make him comfortable in hisold age, 
was changed to ' Bring me a cup of Back, Hal,' which was not near so 
appropriate, neither to host nor to guest, as that which was upon the first 
sign. The place was a horrible old rattletrap, and there ought to be no 
regret that it was demolished." 

At the corner of Eighth and Zane [Filbert] Streets 
was an old tavern dating from the time of the Revo- 



lution, and which)' in the origin, had for its sign a 
" Golden Lion," standing on its hind legs. Whether 
the sign-painter had not done justice to the king of ani- 
mals, or exposure to the weather had made the picture 
indistinct, or our patriotic predecessors wished to show 
their contempt for the British Lion, is not clearly 
shown ; but in course of time the " Golden Lion" 
became the " Yellow Cat.'' This change of name has 
led to much discussion, and the " reminiscences" of 
old gentlemen have not thrown much light on the 
matter, for while some maintained that they had ever 
heard this old tavern designated as the . " Golden 
Lion," others stoutly contended that they had never 
known it by another name than the " Yellow Cat." 
Our surmise that in its youth it was a lion, and when 
age effaced somewhat its bold outlines it was adjudged 
a cat, seems plausible, inasmuch as both animals have 
the feline aspect. Howbeit, the place was a famous 
resort in 1794. An old Philadelphian gives his 
recollection of it as follows : 

" It was held in high repute for ita well-drawn beer and porter, and 
was much resorted to by mechanics and working people to quaff the 
finest malt liquors from the then fashionable pewter mugs. At that 
time the President's house (late the University) in Ninth Street was 
being built, and many of the workmen and contractors — my father being 
one of them — would meet at the tavern in the evenings for the purpose 
of paying and receiving their pay. Many of them being from the old 
country, they adopted, or rather pursued, their old habits hero. Gover- 
nor Mifflin, Gen, Knox, and many others of the committee took their 
mugs of beer there, and it iB probable that Gen. Washington did 

Another describes it as it was at a later period, 
when it was kept by the Holohans, — 

" It was until within fifteen or twenty years famous for its being kept 
In old-fashioned style. There was a huge ten-plate stove in the middle 
of the room. The bar was boxed up with rails, reaching to the ceiling. 
The sanded floor was worn, but clean ; the tallies were scrubbed every 
day until they were as while as snow, and tallow candles illuminated 
the room long after plate-glass, gilding, and gas distinguished the flashy 
city * saloon.' But ' The Yellow Cat' was attractive as an old-fashiuned 
place, by its dissimilarity to other places, and Susan, the ancient maiden 
who brought up the beer in pewter mugs upon an antique pewter salver, 
accompanying the presentation of each mug with the inevitable pretzel, 
will not soon be forgotten by the middle-aged gentlemen of the present 

As far back as 1750, there was a tavern at the corner 
of Front and Chestnut Streets, having for its sign a 
Turk's head, with the name " Kouli Khan." Thamas 
Kouli Khan was a Persian partisan of great valor, 
who drove away the Afghans from his country, and 
defeated the Turkish invaders. His prowess was re- 
warded by the crown of Persia. The fame of the 
victorious patriot and monarch became world-wide, 
and his head made a popular tavern-sign. But some 
time, later he became a tyrant, and signalized the 
closing years of his reign by the most atrocious 
cruelties, which led to his assassination. The sign of 
the Kouli Khan, having survived the original many 
years, those who were not aware of how long it had 
been standing felt puzzled and somewhat indignant 
that the image of such a bad man should have been 
chosen for a sign. The proprietor of the old inn did 

not, perhaps, observe the change that took place in 
his hero after the latter had reigned some years, or if 
he did, he concluded wisely that his sign was a good 
sign, and as it was not his fault if Kouli Khan had 
lost the good opinion of mankind, he let it stand. The 
" Turk's Head," meanwhile, had acquired popularity 
from its gorgeous coloring, and several other taverns 
adopted it. 

The Harp and Crown Tavern of ante-Revolu- 
tionary times was at the corner of Third Street and 
Elbow Lane ; during the Revolution the name was 
changed to the Harp and Eagle ; and some time after 
the tavern was removed to the east side of Third 
Street, below Arch. It was a well-patronized place. 
The house was torn down some time afterward, and an 
elegant structure erected by Heiskell, who gave it the 
name of the City Hotel. This establishment was con- 
sidered one of the finest hotels in the city, and soon 
became the favorite. A public dinner was given there 
on the 27th of November, 1813, to Capt. Bainbridge, 
in honor of his capture of the British frigate " Java." 
Chief Justice Tilghman presided on this occasion, 
assisted by Charles Biddle, Alexander J. Dallas, and 
John Smith. It was at the City Hotel that, on the 
24th day of June, 1833, at a quarter before twelve 
o'clock, John Randolph, of Roanoke, departed this 
life. The hotel at that time was kept by the late 
Edmund Badger. That same month President Jack- 
son came on a visit to Philadelphia, and was quartered 
at the City Hotel. 

The old building occupied by the Harp and Eagle, 
at Third Street and Elbow Lane, became the Robin- 
son Crusoe, and was embellished with a well-painted 
representation of De Foe's hero. 

A popular place of resort in those days is thus 
described : 

" David Weaver's house was situated on the north Bide of Poplar Street, 
about where Ninth Street now goes through. In those days Poplar 
Lane only ran out as far as Fifth Street. Beyond that were farms. 
David Weaver's was a place of great resort for military companies for 
target-shooting; and it was a great place for sports of all kinds, such as 
bear-baiting, bull-baiting, foot-racing, pig-chasing, fox-chasing, badger- 
baiting, climbing a greased pole, wheeling a barrow blindfolded to a 
stake, and many other sports. Madam Johnson, the great aeronautist, 
attempted to make an ascension in her balloon from that place twice, 
and failed on both occasions. At that time there was a man by the name 
of John Runner, whom the PhiladelphianB thought could not bo beaten 
at running one hundred yards. A race was made up between him and 
a Virginian. When the race came off there were five thousand persons 
on the ground, and great excitement was manifested ; but the Virginian 
beat Runner easily." 

Many of these taverns, on the edges of the town, 
were places of amusement, which enjoyed great popu- 
larity. The Yellow Cottage was one of these well- 
known taverns. It was situated in the lower part 
of Southwark, and had originally been built for a 
country house, it was on the east side of Second 
Street near Greenwich. The sign swinging in front 
told that the tavern was kept by Thomas B. Steele, 
and contained the following invitation : 

" Rove not from Bign to sign, but Btop in here, 
Where naught exceeds the prospect but the cheer." 



An old citizen contributed to the Dispatch a de- 
scription of the place and its ways, which is copied 
here in extenso, as giving a graphic and interesting 
picture of the popular amusements in vogue at the 
time. Says this correspondent, — 

"Visitors passed through a large double gate on a gravel walk to the 
cottage, which was surrounded on three sides by a brick pavement, five 
or six feet wide, edged with lilac bushes and Washington bowerB, con- 
cealing the lower story, except, perhaps, the door of the entrance. The 
bar was directly to the right as you went in, and, passing through to 
another room, a door opened out to a porch extending across the eastern 
side of the house, above the level of the ground, sufficient to walk in 
and out of the basement on the slope of the hill. This slope continued 
to descend for about one hundred feet beyond the cottage, or one hun- 
dred and fifty feet from Second Street. Then the ground began to rise 
gradually to the end of a large lot which had a plain hoard fence across 
it, with an opening, and a post and pivot cross-pieces, to pass in and out 
on Front Street. Near the fence, on the hill, stood a large poplar tree. 
Beyond the lot it was all an open space to the Delaware River. On the 
right (along the Second Street fence) of the main entrance there was a 
row of Bheds, a stable, a chicken-hoUBe, and a few hog-pens, where there 
was usually to be seen an immense fat hog, a fat ox, or something else 
to attract patronage. Occasionally shooting parties enjoyed themselves 
here. The rifle and target were used for prize-shooting for a pool, for 
chickens, and sometimes for a fat hog. Quoits, throwing of an axe, 
large stones, and fifty-six-pound weights, were also indulged in. But 
the most amusing entertainment was walking up the hill to the tree 
blindfolded. A man would start off. For a few steps he appeared to 
go direct toward the tree; then he would Blide off to the right or left 
and walk till he thought he had accomplished the feat, or until he was 
tired. He then removed the handkerchief from his eyes, to behold, 
amidst loud shouting, that he had walked in a circle to the place from 
which he had started, or that he was in the bushes, farther from the 
tree than ever. The novelty was sometimes changed by trundling a 
wheelbarrow to the tree blindfolded. Old-sledge, all-fours, and dominoes 
were indulged in on the porch, which was shaded by the house and by 
a few trees. A good southerly breeze could be enjoyed, together with a 
charming view of the river." 

One square below the Yellow Cottage, already de- 
scribed, was the "Purple and Blue" Tavern, kept by 
a Frenchman named Lutier. It took its name from a 
sign representing a large bunch of purple grapes 
painted on a blue ground. This place was a favorite 
resort for military companies. A Mr. Douglas suc- 
ceeded Lutier, and changed the name of the tavern to 
" The Quiet Woman," but the ungallant fellow had a 
sign painted which represented a woman without a 
head. His joke cost him dear, for the denizens of 
Southwark and " the Neck," however they might 
appreciate the company of a quiet woman, would not 
countenance this libel upon the fair sex ; they with- 
drew their patronage, and the discomfited landlord 
removed himself and his sign to other parts. 

More touching was the idea that inspired the painter 
of "A Man full of Trouble," in the small alley which 
runs from the north side of Spruce Street into Dock 
Street. The sign of this very ancient tavern repre- 
sented a man on whose arm his wife was leaning 
heavily, while a monkey was perched on his shoul- 
ders and a parrot on his hand ; the woman carried a 
band-box, on the top of which was a cat. Quite a 
family picture I 

The proprietor of a tavern on Thirteenth Street 
above Locust, whose wooden walls were painted in 
cerulean hues, announced his business in the following 
quatrain : 

" I, William McDermott, lives here ; 
I sells good porter, ale, and beer; 
I've made my sign a little wider 
To let you know I sell good cider." 

There was a sign in Southwark representing a 
group of dogs baying at the full moon, which is 
believed to have been painted by Pratt. Beneath 
was the motto, — 

" Ye foolish dogs ! Why bark ye so ? 
When I'm bo high and ye're so low." 

The Lebanon Tavern, better known as the Lebanon 
Garden, was at the former country-seat of the Emlen 
family, at the southeast corner of Tenth and South 
Streets. It had a handsome sign, painted by Pratt, 
which represented on one side Neptune in his sea- 
chariot, surrounded by Tritons, with the following 
inscription : 

" Neptune with his triumphant host 
Commands the ocean to be silent ; 
Smooths the surface of its waters, 
And universal calm succeeds." 

On the other side of the picture there was a marine 
scene, sailing ships, etc., with the following lines : 

" Now calm at sea and peace on land 
Have blest our Continental stores. 
Our fleets are ready, at command, 
To sway and curb contending powers." 

Over the door of the tavern were these words, — 

" Of the waters of Lebanon, 

Good cheer, good chocolate and tea, 
With kind entertainment, 
By John Kennedy." 

George Brown kept the Lebanon Inn in 1817. 

The Sorrel Horse was once a famous old tavern 
in Kensington, at the intersection of Shackamaxon 
Street and the Frankford road. Dancing was one of 
the principal amusements that brought patronage to 
the tavern, and old Kensingtonians remember hearing 
the sound of the violin and tambourine as they passed 
by the Sorrel Horse. There was another well-known 
tavern sign, the " Lady Washington," on the Frank- 
ford road, opposite Bedford [Wildey] Street. The Odd- 
Fellows or Masons had a large room with a frescoed 
ceiling in the third story of the building, — an old brick 
house, which may be still standing. 

Another famous sign, "Shooting the Deserter," 
swung in front of Peter Boon's Tavern, at the foot 
of Shackamaxon Street, on the Delaware. " Penn's 
Treaty" tavern sign was on Beach Street, below 
Marlborough. The sign of the " Landing of Co- 
lumbus," painted by Woodside, was on Beach Street, 
one door from Laurel. On Second Street, between 
Thompson and Master Streets, west side, was a sign 
of Daniel O'Connell, under whose bust was inscribed 
these lines, — 

" ' Hereditary bondmen ! who would be free, 
Themselves must strike the blow.' " 

The Bolivar Tavern and Garden (formerly the 
Columbian Garden) was on the square bounded by 



what is now Market, Filbert, Merrick, and Fifteenth 
Streets. The grounds were inclosed by a high fence 
and contained many fine old trees. The house was 
built in the centre of the lot, and could be seen 
from afar, the space around being open. The 
seclusion of the " Bolivar," the orderly regula- 
tions adopted for its management, and the many 
attractions of the place made it a favorite resort for 
the most respectable people. Quoits, tenpins, shuffle- 
boards, and other games of the kind were provided 
for the entertainment of visitors. The First City 
Troop had their drill-ground there. 

Muirheid, who succeeded George Parkinson at the 
Burns' Head, in Bank Street, opposite Elbow Lane, 
had upon his swinging sign a very good portrait of 
Scotia's bard, beneath which were the following 

" Tak' a Scotsman frae his hill, 
Clap In bis cheek a Highland gill, 
Say, ' Such is Royal George's will, 

And there's the foe ;' 
He has uae thought but how to kill 
Twa at a blow !" 

On the other side of the sign there was no painting, 
but the following was set out in large gilt letters : 

" 'Twas thus the Royal mandate ran, 
When first the human race began : 
' The friendly, social, honest man, 

Whate'er he be, 
'Tie he fulfills great Nature's plan, 

And none but he.' " 

There was a tippling-house near the navy-yard, on 
whose sign were painted a tree, a bird, a ship, and a 
mug of beer, with the following quaint lines : 

" This is the tree that never grew ; 
This is the bird that never flew ; 
This is the ship that never Bailed ; 
This is the mug that never failed." 

In the same locality was another sign representing 
a cock in the act of crowing, with the motto, " The 
old cock revived." Whether the resuscitated ancient 
rooster was emblematical of the host's commercial 
resurrection, or of some event in the history of the 
tavern, tradition sayeth not. 

On Shippen Street, between Third and Fourth, 
there used to be a tavern sign representing a sailor 
and a woman, separated by these two lines, — 

" The seaworn sailor here will find 
The porter good, the treatment kind." 

The thirsty tars found, doubtless, this invitation 
irresistible. A tavern-keeper at the corner of South 
and Vernon Streets, in 1794, who was of a philosoph- 
ical turn of mind, had on his sign a woman sitting 
before a tub, from which protruded the woolly head 
and bare shoulders of a negro boy; in her raised 
hand she held a brush in an attitude indicative of 
hard scrubbing, while a scroll issuing from her mouth 
informed the passers-by that 'twas " Labor in vain to 
wash blackamoor white." 

The Three Jolly Sailors was the sign of a tavern 

on Water Street, above Almond. One of the tars 
was busy strapping a block, and the motto below 
made him say, — 

" Brother sailor [ please to stop, 
And lend a hand to strap this block ; 
For if you do not stop or call, 
I cannot strap this block at all." 

The Caledonia Tavern, on South Street near Front, 
had on one side of its sign a thistle, and on the other 
side two men shaking hands, with the motto, " May 
we never see an old friend with a new face." 

There used to be a singular sign near the corner of 
Second and Union Streets. It represented a gate, 
with the following lines painted beneath : 

" This gate hangs well, 
It hinders none; 
Refresh and pay, 
Then travel on." 

A tavern on Sixth Street, below Catharine, bore 
the puzzling name of " The Four Alls." The sign, 
five feet long and four feet wide, represented a pala- 
tial abode, on the steps of which stood four figures, a 
king in his royal robes, a general officer in full uni- 
form, a clergyman with his gown and bands, and a 
peasant in the plain garb of his station. The riddle 
was explained by the following inscription : 

" 1. King. — I govern all. 

2. General. — I fight for all. 

3. Minutrr. — I pray for all. 

4. Laborer. — And I pay for all." 

The sign of the Huntsman and Hounds, kept by 
Widow Sarah Brown, on Arch Street, west of Sixth, 
represented a deer hunt. Beneath were these lines, — 

" Our hounds are good, and the horses too; 
The buck is near run down ; 
Call off the hounds, and let them blow, 
While we regale with Brown." 

After a time the " Huntsman and Hounds" was 
designated by the briefer name of " The Buck." The 
well-known anecdote of Sir Walter Raleigh's servant 
finding him surrounded with a cloud of smoke from 
his pipe, and throwing water over him to put out the 
fire, formed the subject of the sign of the Sir Walter 
Raleigh Tavern, on Third Street. Near the entrance 
to the barracks, on Second Street, near Buttonwood, 
was a tavern with the figure of Hudibras painted on 
its sign. An inscription beneath the figure informed 
the public that — 

" Sir Hudibras once rode in state ; 
Now sentry he stands at barrack's gate." 

A small, one-story house with a high-pitched roof, 
whose quaint style of architecture and ancient look 
made it appear to date almost as far back as its 
neighbor, the old Swedes' Church, used to stand on 
Christian Street above Swanson. Over the door was 
a sign representing an old hen with a brood of young 
chickens, and, hovering over them, as if to protect 
them, an eagle holding a crown in its beak, with this 
pithy inscription, " May the wings of Liberty cover 
the chickens of freedom, and pluck the crown from 



the enemy's head." To represent freedom under the 
semblance of an ancient domestic fowl was a rare 
flight of fancy, and the " Hen and Chickens" was 
doubtless a much-admired sign. The grading of the 
street in later years had brought the house much be- 
low the surface level, and customers had to descend 
three steps to get to the bar-room. This apparent 
sinking of the building made the height of its walls 
entirely out of proportion with the high roof, and 
added to the quaintness of its general appearance. 

The sign of " The Man making his way through 
the World" required no inscription, for the ingenious 
artist had painted on it a terrestrial globe from which 
the head and shoulders of a man protruded, not un- 
like a young chick forcing its way out of its egg-shell. 
The old tavern of the Bird-in-Hand was a blue frame 
house, on Fourth Street below Callowhill. On one 
side of the sign a sportsman was represented, holding 
a dead bird in his hand, on the other side were painted 
two birds in the bush, with the motto, " A bird in 
hand is worth two in a bush." 

The Heart, on Frankford road, had a large heart 
painted in natural colors on its sign. It gave its name 
to Heart Lane, called Hart Lane, through euphonic 
corruption of the word, after the old sign had disap- 

About fifty years ago there was a tavern called the 
Bee-Hive, which was kept by Edward Kelly, at the 
northwest corner of Sixth Street and Middle Alley. Its 
sign, a bee-hive with the busy bees going in and out, 
had for its motto, " By Industry we Thrive," a senti- 
ment applicable perhaps to the industrious tavern- 
keeper, but certainly not to the thirsty " bees" who 
left their money on his counter. Another Bee-Hive, 
kept in Frankford some years later by Patrick Kee- 
gan, was more practically frank in this inviting in- 
scription : 

"Here in this hive we're all alive, 
Good liquor makes us funny ; 
If you are dry, step in and try 
The flavor of our honey." 

A sign which stood in Franklin place, below Market 
Street, was very suggestive. It was oval in shape, 
and set on top of a fifteen-feet post, so as to be seen 
from afar. On one side was painted a smartly-dressed 
man mounted on a handsome steed, with the legend, 
" Going to Law." On the other side, the same per- 
sonage, much dilapidated in person and garments, 
was seen on his horse, now jaded and worn out, and 
the legend read, " Coming from Law." 

On John Upton's tavern sign, on Dock Street, 
above Second, the artist had represented fish, game, 
meats, etc., painted with such fidelity to nature that, 
the story has it, a dog passing by was so tempted by 
these delicacies that he made a bold spring to purloin 
some of them, and bumped his head against the sign- 
board, which so discomfited him that he ran off with 
his tail between his legs. An imitation, probably, of 
the story of the birds pecking at the grapes painted 

by Zeuxis. If true, Woodside the industrious sign- 
painter must rank with the famous Athenian artist. 

A tavern on Third Street, above Shippen, had on its 
sign, " X 10 U 8." The riddle excited some curiosity, 
until some one read it, — "The Extenuate House." 
The learned, if they smiled at this ingenious puzzle 
and passed on, stopped complacently to read the in- 
scription painted on the wall over the door leading 
to Prosser's cellar in Market Street, above Eighth. It 
said, very appropriately, Facilis descensus averni, sed 
revoeare gradum — hoc opus, hie labor est." McClain, 
who kept a cellar in Third Street, below Vine, was not 
familiar with the language of Cicero, so he told his 
customers, in plain English, on his door-sign, — 

" Oysters opened or in the shell, 
Of the best I keep to sell ; 
Walk down and try them for yourself, 
That D. MuClain may gain some pelf." 

Such direct invitations to public patronage were 
not uncommon. They were sometimes in prose, but 
much oftener in verse. 

In 1816, James Carson, of the Washington Inn, 
Holmesburg, issued the following address to the 
public : 

"Ye good and virtuous Americans, come ! — whether business or pleas- 
ure be your object — call and be refreshed at the sign of Washington. 
Here money and merit will secure you respect and honor, and a hearty 
welcome to choice liquors and to sumptuous fare. Is it cold? You 
shall find a comfortable fire. Is it warm? Sweet repose under a cool 
and grassy shade. In short, every exertion shall be made to grace the 
Bign of the hero and statesman who was ' first in war, first in peace, and 
first in the hearts of his countrymen.'" 

Who could resist such an appeal ? 

In 1819, George Parkinson, who had formerly kept 
the Burns' Tavern, became the lessee of the Pennsyl- 
vania Arms, in Chestnut Street. Although the old 
sign remained, the house, in consequence of its front 
having been painted green, was thereafter called 
"The Green House." Mr. Parkinson announced his 
new undertaking in the following advertisement: 

" No. 161 Chestnut Street. 
"A generous public's patronage and favor 
Call me once more to make my best endeavor 
At one low bow of thanks, unfeigned, though rude — 
Not framed hy courtesy, but gratitude. 
And here I take the liberty to mention 
A few things not unworthy of attention: 
And first ye gentlemen, officers and volunteers, 
Whom duty calls to drill, lend me your ears: 
Now that the summer, with its cloud of dust 
And parching sunbeams, hastens nigh, you must 
Seek shelter somewhere while you march and drill. 
Now, I've a place where, snug as mouse in mill, 
You mny manoeuvre coolly in the shade, 
And, when you tire, sit down to lemonade, 
Or wine, or whiskey, — what, in short, you please 
To drink, — or eat, from pies to bread and cheese. 
I should bo tediuus if I tried to tell 
The names of all the liquors that I sell. 
A few may serve to make the mind elastic: 
I've whiskey, rye and apple, — all domestic, — 
And genuine Irish, too, and Holland fine, 
And the best of Europe's jren'rous wine. 



Then, just adjoining, M rs. F. has store 

Of pies and creams, and cakes and fruits, and more 

Of all such things than I can mention, — all 

As good and cheap as e'er in store or stall 

Have been exposed to sale ; she HkewiBe sella 

Nice jellies and richly-flavored cordials. 

Snug parties are accommodated here 

With dinners, suppers, and all kind cheer. 

Of nil my patrons' wishes most obedient, 

I am their faithful, most obedient servant, 

" G. Parkinson." 

The baking and confectionery establishment of Mrs. 
Parkinson, alluded to in the latter part of these lines, 
subsequently dominated in interest and profit ; so that 
Mr. Parkinson gave up the tavern and became a con- 
fectioner. In after-years his establishment was the 
best known and the most fashionable in the city. 

But the best thing of this kind was the advertisement 
in which George Helmbold, publisher of The Tickler 
and Independent Balance, announced his intention of 
forsaking the press for the bar (room). It appeared 
in October, 1815, and was as follows : 

" G. Helmbold, hitherto baffled in all "his exertions to attain a decent 
competence, owing to the freaks and vagaries of ' outrageous fortune, 
has at last resolved to court her smiles in the humble vocation of a 
tavern-keeper. To make his approaches in a regular and scientific 
manner, he has rented and obtained license for that compactly commo- 
dious house, No. 1 Georgo Street (which leadB from Sixth to Soventh, 
between Chestnut and Walnut Streets), where he will open on Wednes- 
day, the 1st of November, the Minorva Tavern, or Legitimate Owls 1 Nest. 

The moment the sun is over the fore-yard, Gen. (wbo has kindly 

consented to do duty as officer of the day) will give the signal for firing 
a salute at the bar. 'Mine host 1 of the Minerva will furnish visitors 
with the best liquors that can be procured in the city, from imperial 
Tokay to genuine ' Holland tape' and humming beer. His larder shall 
always afford the choicest bill-of-fare that can be furnished in our mar- 

" G. Helmbold will feel grateful for the visits of his late fellow-officers 
and companions in arms, be they sane or deranged. 

" ' Drink just enough ; 'twill raise your merits 
To prime and not to charge your spirits ; 
For he that drinks not but a prime 
Will live to drink another time ; 
But he that drinks till life shall stop 
Will never drink another drop.' 

'Judy Brass. 1 

" Southern and Western Pennsylvania bank-notes taken at — bar. The 
highest premium for specie or treasury notes paid in liquid stimulants. 

" P.8. — To facilitate the equitable liquidation of the demands of his 
old and patient creditors, G. Helmbold earnestly solicits such distant 
subscribers to his quondam paper, The Tickler, as are indebted to hint, 
either to call personally, whenever they visit Philadelphia, or else to 
forward him the amount of their respective dues as speedily as possible, 
so that he shortly may be enabled to pay his debts to ' the uttermost 
fartJiing.' " 

In August, 1820, the following advertisement ap- 
peared in the Independent Balance: " Union Hotel. 
— Samuel E. Warwick respectfully informs his friends 
and the public generally that he has opened a house 
of entertainment at the northeast corner of Seventh 
and Cedar Streets (or South Street), and has copied for 
his sign Mr. Binn's beautiful copper-plate engraving 
of the Declaration of Independence by that justly- 
celebrated artist, Mr. Woodside. 

" ' Wbate^r may tend to soothe the soul below, 
To dry the tear and blunt the shaft of woe, 
To drown the ills that discompose tho mind- 
All those who seek at Warwick^ Ian shall find. 1 " 

The sign of Rolla carrying the child, which was 
attributed to Woodside, was at the corner of Front and 
Catharine Streets. The figure of Rolla is generally 
believed to be a portrait of George Frederick Cooke. 
A correspondent of the Dispatch, however, protests 
earnestly against this belief, as Cooke was " too in- 
tensely British to perform an American hero, and he 
was insulting at all times to Americans;" he says in 
support of his opinion that Dunlap, in his " Life of 
Cooke," does not mention Cooke performing Rolla. 
He asserts confidently, moreover, that " the sign repre- 
sented Mr. Forrest, and the tavern was kept by Capt. 
Koehler, father of the late Edwin Forrest Koehler, of 
the Philadelphia bar." As the Rolla sign on Catha- 
rine Street was there in 1817, that is, before Mr. Forrest 
appeared on the stage, it is possible there was another 
tavern of the same name with Forrest's likeness. 

The Phoenix Tavern, at the intersection of German- 
town road and Sixth Street, was a favorite place of 
resort for persons who could come in their own car- 
riages and wagons. The grounds were pleasant, and 
Cohocksink Creek, then a bright and attractive stream, 
ran through them. Out of compliment to the tavern 
the street on its south side, when first opened, was 
called Phoenix Street, a name which it bore until 
within a few years. The house was built about 1810, 
by Samuel Hymas, who also kept a grocery-store at 
that place. He was an Englishman. The Phoenix 
Tavern was afterward kept by Joseph Knox. When 
he gave up the Phoenix he went to the Lamb Tavern, 
on Fifth Street, below Arch. 

On the west side of Sixth Street, a few doors above 
"The Four Alls," already described, there was a 
small tavern called " The Ram's Head Headquarters." 
Its sign was a huge rain's head, with crooked horns, 
which was nailed to the wall. A correspondent tells 
the following anecdote in connection with this place : 

" This was about the year 1840. One Sunday evening iu the Metho- 
dist Church (Catharine Street, above Sixth Street), the pastor, Rev. 
' Billy 1 Barnes, the Shakespearian pulpit orator, was seen to walk slowly 
up the eastern aisle and go into the pulpit. When there he turned 
around and gazed at the congregation for a few seconds, and then spoke 
thuB: ' While walking to this house of worship, T was pained to see 
men going in " The Kaui's Head Headquarters," — a rum-shop, — head- 
quarters for rams! Oh, brethren ; what a contrast, — the lambs of heaven 
and the rams of hell. 1 This caused some little merriment among the 
curious, which whb increased by Barnes, upon his doubling up his fists 
with a pugilistic attitude, stamping upon the floor, and daring the devil 
to come right out and fight him, — ' here ! here I in this pulpit! 1 " 

A curious conceit was the sign of William Newton's 
Tavern, at the corner of Eighth and Buttonwood 
Streets, erected in the fall of the year in which David 
R. Porter was elected Governor of Pennsylvania. 
The tavern was diagonally opposite the old school- 
house, where at that time the elections were held, and. 
the sign in question was a large log of wood- cut into 
the shape of a bottle and swung on a hickory pole. 
This was called the " Porter-Bottle." The " Adam 
and Eveses' Garden" (so the sign read) had a picture 
of Adam and Eve in Eden. This tavern was on 
Sixth Street, above Berks. 



The Cock and Lion — emblematically France and 
England — was the sign of a famous old tavern at the 
corner of Coates and Second Streets, which was fre- 
quently used for political meetings. It was kept for 
several years by Davis Kerlin, and after the death of 
the latter by his widow. She retired from business 
some years later, and the sign of the Cock and Lion 
was transferred to a tavern on Fourth Street, north 
of George Street, kept by Grundlock. 

The sign of the Woodman Tavern on Germantown 
road, near Fifth Street, represented a woodman with 
an axe. Beneath the picture were the following 
lines : 

" In Freedom's happy land, 
My task of duty done, 
In Mirth's light-hearted band 
Why not the lowly woodman one?" 

At the corner of Sixth and South Streets was the 
tavern of the Patriot Brothers. The sign represented 
the Temple of Liberty, with various implements of 
war. On the steps of the temple a soldier and a 
sailor grasped each other's hand. Over this group 
was the motto, "Where Liberty dwells there is my 

A curious anecdote is told about the Rotterdam 
Tavern. This famous old house was kept by John Hay, 
at No. 118 North Third Street. In 1801 he removed to 
Fourth Street, between Race and Vine, and took the 
sign of the Rotterdam with him. He sold out in 
1815, and in 1817 Buel Rowley set up the same old 
sign at 118 North Third Street, — the identical place 
where it was originally kept by John Hay. It often 
happened that a tavern-keeper, upon changing his 
place of business, took his sign with him and set it up 
at his new house. This was particularly the case 
where the old house had enjoyed much popularity. 
The sign was identified with its owner and the success 
he had achieved, and not with the locality. Hence 
an uncertainty in locating many old taverns, and the 
disputes between old gentlemen whose recollections 
of those old places conflict. Each equally sure of 
the description of a sign and the name, perhaps, of 
its owner, they disagree totally as regards the street 
and the house. If dates could always be remembered, 
the tavern-keeper might be followed in his migrations 
and all contradictions would cease to exist. 

On the other hand there were sometimes changes 
in the signs. Much importance was attached to these 
symbols, and if one was found not to " draw,'' the 
landlord sought by some new device to attract cus- 
tomers. Then, the tavern might change hands and 
the new proprietor would substitute a new name and 
new sign more to his taste and fancy. Thus, the 
Washington Tavern, before mentioned, was changed 
to the New Theatre Hotel, and finally became the 
Falstaff Inn ; the name of the Bull's Head, in Sixth 
Street, was changed to the Oley Wagon before 1822 ; 
in that year the tavern changed hands, and the new 
landlord, Bartholomew Graves, restored the old name 

and sign of the Bull's Head ; some years later, another 
man bought the place and called it The Mont- 
gomery House. 

The great variety of tavern signs in Philadelphia 
could not fail to attract the attention of travelers, and 
the Englishman Palmer, who visited the city in 1818, 
noticed it. He says, — 

" We observed several curious tavern signs in Philadelphia, and on 
the roadside, among others, Noah's Ark ; a variety of Apostles ; Bu n- 
yan's Pilgrim ; a cock on a lion's back, crowing, with the word ' lib- 
erty' issuing from his beak; naval engagements, in which the British 
ships are in a desperate situation, etc. The most common signs are 
eagles, beads of public characters, Indian kings, etc." 

Yet, with the large number of houses of entertain- 
ment existing at that early period, we hear nothing 
of the drinking habits so often complained of in ante- 
Revolution times. The testimony of travelers would 
tend to show an almost total disappearance of those 

Lieut. Francis Hall, who traveled in 1817, says, — 

" The innkeepers of America are, in most villages, what we call, vul- 
garly, ' topping-men,' — field-officers of militia with good farms attached 
to their taverns, so that they are apt to think, what, perhaps, in a 
newly-settled country is not very wide of the truth, that travelers 
rather receive than confer a favor by being accommodated at their 
houses. They always give us plentiful fare, particularly at breakfast, 
when veal-cutlets, sweetmeats, cheese, eggs, and ham, were most lib- 
erally set before us. Dinner is a little more than a repetition of break- 
fast, with spirits instead of coffee. I never heard wine called for. The 
common drink is a small cider. Rum, whiskey, and brandy are placed 
upon the table, and the use of them left to the discretion of the com- 
pany, who seem rarely to abuse them. Tea is a meal of the same solid 
construction as breakfast, answering also for supper. The daughters of 
the host officiate at tea and breakfast, and generally wait at dinner." 

Several of the inns and taverns of some consequence 
in the early part of this century were opened in houses 
of historical interest, old mansions, once the homes of 
some of the founders of Philadelphia, or within whose 
walls some of the great men of the Revolution were 
temporary dwellers or casual visitors. In 1800, John 
Francis, who had kept the Indian Queen on Fourth 
Street, opened the Union Hotel in the house built by 
Mrs. Mary Masters, about 1762, on Market Street, 
between Fifth and Sixth Streets. This elegant man- 
sion had had many illustrious tenants; the residence 
of Lieutenant-Governor Richard Penn previous to the 
war, it became the headquarters of Gen. Howe during 
the occupation of Philadelphia by the British ; scarcely 
had it been vacated by Gen. Howe, when Maj.-Gen. 
Benedict Arnold took possession of it; later it was 
occupied by John Holker, consul-general of France, 
became the home of Robert Morris, the financier, 
who gave it up to President Washington. President 
John Adams afterward occupied it. Whether the 
memories attached to this noble mansion awed the 
guests of the Union, or they felt too keenly their 
smallness in those rooms where the giants of the 
Revolution lived, thought, and acted, or for the more 
prosaic reason that such a fine house could not be 
made to pay, the landlord gave it up after a two 
years' trial, and returned to the Indian Queen. 

Benjamin Franklin's house, in Franklin Court, 



also became a hotel. It was opened in 1802 by 
John Cordner, who does not seem to have been 
luckier than John Francis, for he did not keep it 
very long; and in 1805, Daniel Dunn gave notice 
that he had leased this house for a number of years, 
and would keep in it a tavern, beefsteak, and oyster- 
house. In the first year of John Cordner's tenancy 
a dinner was given to Thomas Paine, in the room 
which had been Dr. Franklin's library. 

The Bingham mansion, on Third Street, where that 
leader of society, the charming Mrs. Bingham, was 
wont to collect around her the beauty and wit of 
Philadelphia, became a public-house ' after the death 
of its owners. William Renshaw leased it in 1806. 
He proposed to make a place of resort for merchants 
and business men generally. He was to keep a 
marine diary and a register of vessels for sale, to 
receive and forward ships' letter-bags, and to have 
accommodations for the holding of auctions. He 
even published proposals for keeping the Exchange 
Coffee-House, and solicited subscriptions for its sup- 
port, but finding that he could not compete success- 
fully against another establishment of the same kind, 
the Merchants' Coffee-House, kept by James Kitchen, 
he gave up the exchange plan and opened the Man- 
sion House Hotel in 1807. In 1812 he left it to open 
the " New Mansion House Hotel," in Market Street, 
but came back to it in 1814, and kept it until it was 
destroyed by fire, March 17, 1823. 

A traveler who published " An Excursion through 
the United States and Canada during the Years 1822- 
23, by an English Gentleman," bore testimony to Ren- 
shaw's good management, and to the very moderate 
prices charged by such a first-class hotel as the Man- 
sion House. The cost of keeping a hotel must have 
terribly increased since 1823, judging from the rates 
of the present day. This traveler said, — 

"Philadelphia, for so large a town, is very ill provided with hotels, or, 
to use the American word, taverns. The only good one in the city is 
that one at which I put up, the Mansion House, kept by a Mr. Renshaw. 
At this, as at all taverns in the United States, the stranger ib boarded at 
so much a week or day. Indeed, the tavern-keepers will not receive yon 
on any other terms; and you cannot have your meals by yourself, or at 
your own hours. This custom of ' boarding,' as it is termed, I disliked 
very much, as it deprived me of many a meal when I was desirous of 
going to see sights. If a traveler stay at a hotel only one day, and, from 
having friends in the place, neither dines nor sups, he is charged, never- 
theless, with a whole day's board. The terms of boarding are, however, 
very moderate at the Mansion House, only ten dollars per week. The 
table is always spread with the greatest profusion and variety, even at 
breakfast, tea, and supper; all of which meals, indeed, were it not for 
the absence of wine and soup, might be called so many dinners." 

Joseph Head, who some years later became the 
landlord of the Mansion House (it had been repaired 
after the fire and opened by Chester Bailey), had been 
a gentleman of leisure and means, moving in the first 
circles of society. Having been so unfortunate as to 
become suddenly impoverished, he decided to turn to 
account his epicurean tastes and experience, and 
opened a " Private Gentlemen's Restaurant and Club- 
House" at the corner of Columbia Avenue [now 
Seventh Street] and Walnut, in what had been the 

McClellan and afterward the Randall family mansion. 
During the visit of Gen. Lafayette, in 1824, the First 
City Troop gave him a splendid entertainment in this 
house. Mr. Head was very successful in his under- 
taking, and after remaining some years in the McClel- 
lan mansion, he took the Mansion House, as better 
adapted to his largely-increased business. This estab- 
lishment commanded the public favor until it was 
badly injured by fire in 1847, when it ceased to be used 
as a hotel. Among its guests were Mr. and Miss 
Kemble during their sojourn in Philadelphia in 1832 
and 1833, and Mr. and Mrs. Charles Kean, who were 
staying there at the time of the fire, in 1847. 

The old family mansion of the McCalls, at the north- 
west corner of Second and Union Streets, was turned 
into a hotel in 1809. Joseph B. Barry opened it under 
the name of the City Hotel. On the occasion of this 
opening, on the 11th of June, he gave a grand dinner 
in honor of the revival of commercial intercourse with 
Great Britain. The Philadelphia Gazette, speaking of 
the affair, said, — 

" The dCbvl of the hotel was such as to give ample promise of making 
a very conspicuous figure, and of proving very useful to the public. 
. . . The building is second to nothing that our country contains. In- 
deed, when we take into view the number, convenience, dimensions, 
and excellence of the apartmentB, it is perhaps not too much to say that 
it is the foremost house of the kind in the United States. This house, 
besides a public dining-room and a coffee-room, contains a hall-room." 

John McLaughlin succeeded Barry as proprietor of 
this house in the latter part of the year 1813. The 
house was not successful, and was abandoned as a 
hotel about 1815. 

The handsome head of the Bard of Avon was a 
favorite sign. There were several " Shakespeare" inns, 
the principal one being that on South Sixth Street, 
between Market and Chestnut Streets, kept by David 
Irvin, and later (1805) by William Smith. A much 
more fashionable establishment, however, was the 
Shakespeare Hotel at the northwest corner of Sixth 
and Chestnut Streets. It was kept in 1804 by Joseph 
Vogdes, who was succeeded in 1806 by Lewis Young. 
David Barnum, of Columbus, Pa., leased this hotel 
in 1808, but he was not very successful, although in 
his announcement of the opening he had stated con- 
fidently that, " To those who know the accommoda- 
tions of the house, the size of the rooms, and the 
manner in which they are fitted up, it would be su- 
perfluous to say anything upon the subject." Samuel 
Hymas afterward kept the Shakespeare Hotel for some 

The Robin Hood Tavern, in Poplar Street below 
Fourth, was a popular dance-house, and also famous 
for bear- and bull-fights on holidays. There was also 
a Robin Hood Inn on Ridge road, near Laurel Hill, 
which was established long before the Revolution. 

The Silver Heels was the nickname of another tavern 
and dance-house, situated in Tammany Street, be- 
tween Fifth and Sixth Streets. The sign of " The 
Four Nations," in Coates Street, near Fairmount, 
represented four forts, flying respectively the flags of 



the United States, England, France, and Spain. On 
Beach Street, near the Cohocksink Creek bridge, 
Kensington, was a sign of " Washington Crossing the 
Delaware," after Sully's famous picture. 

The sign of the " State Fencibles Second Company" 
was in front of a yellow frame public-house on Third 
Street, below Coates. This house was kept by John 
Christine, a lieutenant in the Second Fencibles. On 
Callowhill Street, below Water, was a sign sur- 
mounted by the model of a ferry-boat, with a bird- 
box on top. The swallows used to make their nests 
in this box. 

After the first decade in the present century, we see 
no new inns; the modern appellation of "hotel" is 
more general. The first house constructed in Phil- 
adelphia especially for the purpose of a hotel was 
the new Mansion Hotel, at the southeast corner of 
Eleventh and Market Streets. It was erected by 
Thomas Leiper, the owner of the lot, for William 
Renshaw, who left the Mansion House (Bingham's) 
and opened the new house in 1813. Although pro- 
vided with every convenience known at that time, 
and elegantly furnished, the new Mansion House did 
not prove to be a very profitable venture, owing, 
probably, to its remoteness from the business quarter 
of the city, and Mr. Renshaw, after a year or two of 
trial, returned to his former hotel. Ford Cutter, of 
New York, then became the lessee, but he could not 
accomplish what Renshaw's experience and ability 
had failed to achieve, and his experiment, also, was 
of short duration. 

Judd's Hotel, No. 27 South Third Street, was opened 
in 1819, by Anson Judd. The building, which was 
formerly the post-office, had been enlarged, and pre- 
sented a very fine appearance, being four stories high, 
with a large front. This hotel did a very good busi- 
ness. Dana Judd Upson succeeded Anson Judd in 
the management, and in 1824 the hotel passed into 
the hands of James Bradley. There was an adjoining 
lot which fronted on Chestnut Street, upon which a 
hotel was built in 1826 with two entrances, one on 
Third Street and one on Chestnut Street. This 
building, with its double extension, had the shape 
of an " L." It was called Congress Hall. 

The Bell Tavern, on South Eighth Street, might 
have been, but probably was not, named after the old 
bell that hung in the State-House. In its earlier 
days the Bell was a great resort for politicians, and 
was said to have been the first house in Philadelphia 
where Andrew Jackson was named for the Presi- 
dency. When in the great fire of 1854 the whole 
block, including the museum and the National 
Theatre, was destroyed, the " Bell" was the only 
building that escaped the flames. It had already 
fallen from its high estate, and had become a "three- 
cent shop," frequented by blacks and whites. 

The Cornucopia Eating-House and Restaurant, in 
Third Street, below Arch, west side, was opened in 
1832, by Robert Manners, who sold it in 1836 to Robert 

Harmer. It was a first-class establishment. The St. 
Charles Hotel was erected on the same site. 

The Golden Swan Tavern was on the banks of the 
Schuylkill River, near Point Breeze. It was kept 
during a few years by Abraham McGee, after which 
the property was sold and became a private residence. 
William Trotter kept for many years the Richmond 
Hotel, at Port Richmond. It was a place much fre- 
quented by sportsmen, and Charles J. Wolbert, who 
occupied it in 1821, announced that, in addition to 
his large stock of catfish, he had received about 
fourteen hundred others from the cove opposite Rich- 
mond. "The fowler and fisher are informed that there 
are no better gunning or fishing grounds than those 
adjoining the above hotel." 

The Decatur Inn was started in October, 1813, by 
George Schoch, in Carpenter Street. This house was 
originally known as the German Hall. The sign was 
a representation of the hall of the German Society 
near by, on Seventh Street, below Market. Before 
Schoch took it, Jacob Nice kept an eating-house there. 
As the " Decatur Inn," it won the patronage of quiet- 
loving people, and became quite prosperous. It gave 
its name to Decatur Street, which was originally 
called Turner's Alley. 

The Union Hall Hotel, at the corner of Chestnut 
and .Front Streets, formerly kept by J. E. Beauson, 
having passed into the hands of T. Thomas, the new 
lessee advertised as an attraction to customers that his 
rooms were " kept warm with Lehigh coal." 

After the completion of the Market Street br.idge a 
tavern, known as the Ferry House, was built on the 
west side of the Schuylkill, north of Market Street. 
A large hotel, which received the name of " The 
Schuylkill Hotel," was erected on the north side of 
Market Street. It was kept in 1810 by Peter Evans. 
Buell Rowley succeeded him in 1815, but kept the place 
only one year. It then passed under the management 
of R. Smith. 

The Upper Ferry Hotel, on the west side of the 
Schuylkill, at Fairmount, was kept by Jacob Horn 
in 1820. Richard Harding became the landlord some 
years later. The Lower Ferry House, known aa 
Gray's Ferry and Garden, was kept in 1800 by George 
Weed, in 1804 by James Coyles, formerly of the 
Indian Queen, Fourth Street, and in 1805 by Curtis 
Grubb. In 1825, D. Kochersperger became the 

Mendenhall's Ferry Tavern was on the west side of 
the Schuylkill, below the Falls, and opposite a ford 
which landed on the east side and ran up to the 
Ridge turnpike. The lane still remains between 
North and South Laurel Hill Cemeteries. Menden- 
hall's was a famous catfish-and-coffee tavern upon 
the river-road drive, and was popular. 

Among the taverns of a more recent date than 
those already described, was one with the picture of 
Gen. Washington, on Second Street, near the corner 
of Lombard Street, some forty years ago, which at- 



tracted attention by the peculiar arrangement of its 
sign, rather a novelty at the time. It was one of 
those signs with perpendicular strips or slats so com- 
bined that while one has a good front view of the 
subject when standing opposite, an equally correct 
view of some other portrait is had when approaching 
the sign from either side. Another tavern, on Chest- 
nut Street above Sixth, had a sign made in this style, 
but the three views showed three different pictures. 
Another of these signs, on a brewery in Fifth Street 
below Market, presented the names of the three 
partners who conducted the business. 

A tavern at the southwest corner of Tenth and 
Arch Streets had a large sign of Gen. Washington, 
and was generally known as the " Washington Soup- 
House," being famous for the excellent soups and 
pepper-pots with which the proprietor, William 
Raster, tempted his epicurean customers. 

"Our House" was the name of a handsome drink- 
ing-saloon established by John Vasey & Co., in 1839 
or 1840, on the south side of Library Street, between 
Fourth and Fifth, in the building known as Military 
Hall, which was originally constructed by Mathew 
Carey for his printing-office. It was subsequently 
occupied by J. H. Fennimore, and called the Union 
House; later it was used by Labbe as a dancing- 
saloon, and afterward taken by certain military 
companies for an armory. Here used to meet the 
State Fencibles, Capt. James Page; Second State 
Fencibles, Capt. Murray; Washington Blues, Capt. 
W. C. Patterson. Here Frank Johnson, the black 
musician, who as a performer on the bugle had no 
superior at the time, practiced his band, which was 
the only band of music for some years in Philadel- 
phia. It was after this that Vasey & Co. took it. 

" Head Quarters," on Franklin Place above Chest- 
nut, succeeded it, and was opened by Charles Alex- 
ander probably about 1836. It was rich with cosmo- 
ramas, pictures, busts, etc., and many original views 
of buildings in Philadelphia, by Breton. There was 
quite an extensive reading-room, well supplied with 
newspapers, being the " exchanges" of the Daily 
Chronicle and other publications of which Alexander 
was the proprietor. 

The Wasp and Frolic, at the corner of Garden and 
Vine Streets, was some years older than the above 
described. The following anecdote is related in 
connection with this tavern : " One evening, in 1829, 
a party of butchers and drovers were at this place, 
a short time after the robbery of the Kimberton 
mail, when one of the latter said that he was going 
to leave the city that night. One of the butchers told 
him that he had better look out for the mail-rob- 
bers. The drover, a big, burly fellow, swore that no 
three men could tie his hands behind him. That 
night the Reading mail left the city. When it arrived 
at Turner's Lane, the horses were suddenly swung 
around that lane by one of the robbers ; another 
pointed his pistol at the head of the driver, and 

ordered him to remain quiet ; the third robber opened 
the door of the stage, and said, ' Gentlemen, I wish 
you to get out, one at a time.' The boasting drover 
was the first one called upon to get out, which he did, 
without uttering a word. His hands were tied, and 
his pockets were emptied. The others were served in 
the same manner. One of the passengers objected to 
having his tobacco taken from him. This created 
some merriment, in which the robbers joined. An- 
other passenger, taking advantage of the merriment, 
requested the return of his watch, which he said was 
a family keepsake. It was handed to him. That 
drover was ever after known under the sobriquet of 
the ' Reading Mail.' " 

The California House, which was the scene of a riot 
on election night, October, 1849, was situated at the 
corner of Sixth and St. Mary Streets. 

The Sans Souci Hotel was opened by William De- 
beaufre, in the former country-seat of the Say family, 
a delightfully romantic place on the cliffs near Gray's 
Ferry, on the west side of the Schuylkill. It was 
afterward kept by Othwine, who already had a tavern 
on the east side of the river. The Sans .Souci, 
which promised to become a favorite resort owing to 
its situation, had, however, but a short life. The 
opening of the Philadelphia, Baltimore and Wilming- 
ton Railroad had caused it to spring into existence, 
and the widening of this railroad a few years later 
compelled its demolition ; it was in the way, like so 
many older landmarks. 

Carel's tavern and restaurant, at the sign of " Gen. 
Simon Bolivar," was in Chestnut Street above jBixth, 
between the theatre and the Arcade. Some twenty-five 
or thirty years ago there was exhibited in this house a 
curiosity which attracted crowds of visitors. This was 
the mummy or dried-up remains of a so-called native 
of South America, found in the guano deposits of Peru. 
A gentleman who went to see this curiosity several 
times says, " The whole body was the color of an old 
saddle, and through its breast still stuck a part of the 
spear that had killed what looked to me to once have 
been a Portuguese. The remains were shriveled up ; 
and the person had been, when living, not more than 
five feet four inches in height." Some naval, officers 
who visited it in his company insisted that the body 
was that of an ancient Peruvian, and perhaps five 
hundred or six hundred years old. 

There was a tavern kept by Eady Patterson at the 
southwest corner of Eighth and Lombard Streets, 
which had two very flashy signs, representing a half 
sun with radiating rays and stars surrounding it, one 
being on Lombard Street and the other on Eighth 
Street. This was a very respectable house, and was 
well patronized. Mr. Patterson died in 1832, and the 
" Rising Sun" double sign disappeared. 

The most conspicuous, and for a long time the prin - 
cipal hotel of the city, was the United States Hotel, on 
the north side of Chestnut Street between Fourth and 
Fifth, opposite the United States Bank. It was orig- 



inally built by alteration and addition to two large 
dwelling-houses, spacious and wide, with side yards 
and gardens. As it increased in popularity it was 
enlarged by an extensive addition on the east, so that 
in the upper stories the hotel took up the front space 
of seven ordinary brick houses. John Rea, an up- 
holsterer, built this hotel, which was opened for guests 
in the year 1826. The host was Richard Renshaw. 1 

The United States Hotel for thirty years was the 
house to which strangers of distinction were sent, 
foreign travelers and others. It was in this hotel, 
upon the first visit of Charles Dickens to this country, 
that a small, self-appointed lot of Philadelphians 
assured the author of " Pickwick" that they came 
as representative Philadelphians, " with our hearts in 
our hands." The western part of the United States 
Hotel property in 1856 was sold to the Bank of Penn- 
sylvania. The present Philadelphia Bank stands on 
the spot. 

A well-known first-class hotel for many years was 
the North American, sometimes called the Union 
Hotel, on the south side of Chestnut Street between 
Sixth and Seventh. It was a patched-up affair, made 
by the alteration of dwelling-houses. It was opened 
by Mrs. C. Yohe, then fell into the management of 
John A. Jones, and was commonly called Jones' 
Hotel for many years. Bridges and West were pro- 
prietors toward the end of its career. 

The Columbia House, on the north side of Chest- 
nut Street, adjoining the Arcade on the west, also 
aspired to be a hotel of the first class. It took posses- 
sion of the mansion of Mrs. Elizabeth Powell after 
her death, and was kept by Badger, by Bagley Mc- 
Kenslie, and Ferguson. It was not a successful 
house, although it made a brave struggle for business. 

Petry's restaurant, on Walnut Street above Third, 
was opened in April, 1858, in one of the finest old 
mansions in the city. It was built about 1793, for 
Judge Richard Peters, who occupied it for ten or 
fifteen years as a city residence, his country-seat being 
at Belmont, now Fairmount Park. After Judge 
Peters left it, the house was occupied by Charles 
Chauncey, attorney-at-law, who was succeeded by 
Elihu Chauncey, and Chauncey and Chester. The 
following interesting recollections about this old man- 
sion appeared iu the Dispatch some years ago, when 
Petry's restaurant was closed : 

" This house was, i n its time, the resort of the very best society in the 
city. Judge Peters was generous and convivial, entertained liberally, 
and had many visitors. Among them, no doubt, during the time that 
Congress sat iu Philadelphia, were Washington, John Adams, Thomas 
Jefferson, James Madison, — perhaps Andrew Jackson, who was a member 
of Congress before the capital was removed to Washington, — and all the 
distinguished people of the time. In the neighborhood were some 
notable residents. Bishop White lived next door, on the west. Dr. 
Benjamin Rush, signer of the Declaration of Independence, lived, in 

1 After Richard Renshaw, the proprietors of the United States Hotel 
were David Dorrance, who kept the house for many years, Noah W. 
Bridges, Thomas C. Rea, a son of the owner of the property, M. Pope 
Mitchell, Capt. Charles H. Miller, and C. J. McOlellan. 

1791, at the northwest corner of Walnut and Third Streets, where the 
Dispatch office now stands. He was succeeded, in 1795, by Nalbro 
Frazier. Dr. John Redman Coxe, professor in the University, after- 
ward lived in the house. Mrs. Mary Harrison, mother-in-law of 
Bishop White, lived next door to the corner in 1791. At the southwest 
corner of Third and Walnut Streets was the house of James Wilson, 
sometimes called ' Fort Wilson. 1 He was a signer of the Declaration of 
Independence, and afterward judge of the United States Supreme 
Court. William Lewis, a celebrated lawj'er, afterward lived in that 
house. Opposite the Peters mansion were two stately houses with high 
steps, adjoining the old Quaker almshouse, on the east. They were 
occupied, from 1791 until after 1800, by Benjamin Chew, Jr., son of 
Chief Justice Chew, who lived in No. 68, and afterward hy Sansom 
Levy, in the same house. No. 70 was the mansion of Edward Stiles, 
formerly a sea captain, who had his country-seat at Green Hill, now in 
the neighborhood of Broad and Poplar StreetB." 

That fine hotel, The Aldine, was opened in 1877, 
in the old Rush mansion, on Chestnut Street, above 
Nineteenth. It was the residence of the late Dr. 
James Rush, the founder of the Rush Library. Dr. 
Rush's wife, a leader in fashionable and literary cir- 
cles, was the daughter of Jacob Ridgway, the mil- 
lionaire. Dr. Rush was a son of Dr. Benjamin Rush, 
of Revolutionary memory, and for some time the 
surgeon-general of Washington's army. 

In noticing the principal inns and taverns of Phil- 
adelphia, and such as have some historical or pleasant 
local memory attached to them, several may have been 
inadvertently omitted. It could hardly have been 
otherwise in a work of this kind. Individuals who 
recollect interesting facts concerning a tavern, a 
house, or a street, are often surprised that these facts 
are not mentioned in the history of the city. Yet, 
there is nothing strange in the omission. In the first 
place, that which is a very pleasant recollection to a 
private individual may not be of sufficient interest 
to the public at large to justify its insertion in a 
history, or it may not have come to the knowledge of 
the historian. Then, the abundance of matter which 
has to be sifted and condensed in writing local history, 
renders omissions unavoidable. Otherwise, a volume 
would hardly suffice for a subject which must be treated 
within the limits of a chapter. 

Below will be found a list of the inns and taverns 
existing in the city at different periods. In pre- 
paring this list the personal recollections of many 
old residents have been added to such information 
as could be gleaned from old directories, newspaper 
files, and other publications. This list, of course, is 
not given as complete. Some inaccuracies may also 
have crept in it, and some repetitions, but these are 
due mostly to changes of proprietors and of localities, 
— a tavern changing hands and its sign being removed 
to some other house. 

Among the taverns that were known during the first 
half of the eighteenth century, the following are 
remembered : The Plume of Feathers, Front Street, 
by George Champion ; Prince Eugene, Front Street, 
by Garrigues ; the White Horse, by Owen Humphries ; 
the George Inn, by John Steel, Second and Arch 
Streets ; the Bear, by Nicholas Scull ; the Queen's 
Head, Water Street; the Centre House, near the 



old Centre Square; Pewter Platter, Front Street; 
the Indian King, Market Street, by Owen Owen ; 
the Lion, Elbow Lane, by George Shoemaker ; 
the Black Horse, Black Horae Alley ; King George 
on Horseback; the White Horse, upper end of 
Market Street; the Dolphin, Chestnut Street; the 
Buck, Germantown, by Anthony Nice; the Mari- 
ners' Compass and Four Horseshoes, Strawberry 
Alley, by Elizabeth Walton ; Two Sloops, Water 
Street; the Boatswain and Call, at the Drawbridge, 
by Philip Herbert ; the White Hart, Market Street, by 
Richard Warder; the Three Mariners, Front Street; 
the Half Moon, by Charles Stow, Market Street; 
Crooked Billet, by Barbara Lewis, King Street ; Red 
Lion, Second Street, by Sampson Davis; London 
Coffee-House, near Carpenter's wharf (between Chest- 
nut and Walnut Streets) ; King's Arms, opposite 
Christ Church parsonage, by William Whitebread ; 
Rose, in Arch Street ; Conestoga Stage Wagon, Market 
Street, by James Gray ; James' Coffee-House, Front 
Street ; London Prentice ; the Jolly Trooper, Arch 
Street ; the Fleece, Front Street ; the Jolly Sailors, 
Front Street; Roberts' Coffee-House; the Bear, Frank- 
ford ; the Blue Bell, Frankford ; the Free Mason, 
Front Street, by Thomas Jarvis ; Rising Sun, German- 
town road, by A. Nice ; the Swan, Chestnut Hill ; the 
Black Bull, Market Street, by John Chappel; the 
Three Crowns, Water Street; the Royal Standard, 
Market Street; the Hen and Chickens, Chestnut 
Street, by Widow Brientnall ; Plow and Harrow, 
Third Street, by John Jones; Three Tuns, White 
Marsh, by Christopher Bobbins; the Harp.and Crown, 
Third Street, below Arch ; the West India Coffee- 
House, by Margaret Ingram ; the Lion, Wicaco, by 
Michael Israel; Seven Stars, Elbow Lane; Anchor 
and Hope, Black Horse Alley ; the Swan, Spruce 
Street, west of Front, by John Ord; the Brig and 
Snow, Strawberry Alley ; the Queen of Hungary, 
Front Street. 

The following date from that period and the Revo- 
lution : Crooked Billet and Ball, by John Strieker, 
upper end of Second Street; One Tun, Chestnut 
Street, by Joseph Coburn ; Black Boy and Trumpet, 
by William Forrest; Royal Anne, Second Street; 
Death of the Fox, Second Street, by Richard Wag- 
staff; Ship, Frankford road ; Sloop, by Thomas Hill, 
Kensington ; Royal Standard, Market Street, by 
Rebecca Pratt; Amsterdam, Second Street, between 
Race and Vine, by John Grubb; George, Second 
and Arch, by John Luckin ; Blue House, by John 
Crozier; Boar's Head, Pewter Platter Alley; Black 
Horse, Black Horse Alley, by John Pickel ; New 
Boar's Head, Keyser's Alley, by Joseph Templar; 
The Gun, Moyamensing, by Joseph Kepach ; White 
Horse, Robeson ; King's Arms, by William Whit- 
bread, Second, opposite Church ; Black Horse, Black 
Horse Alley, by Henry Duff; Black Swan, Walnut 
Street; Indian King, Hendrick, Third near Market ; 
Bull's Head, upper end of Market Street, by Widow 

Gray ; Lamb, Market, between Fourth and Fifth ; 
Horse and Groom, Fourth Street, by William Gardi- 
ner, Noah's Ark, Poole's bridge, by Thomas Foster ; 
Admiral Warren ; Boar's Head, Pine, near the new 
market; Rising Sun, Fourth Street, by Joshua 
Mitchell; Conestoga Wagon, Market Street, by 
Charles Jenkins ; Harp and Crown, by Mrs. Stevens, 
Third Street; Brigantine, South Street, by Amos 
Jones ; City of Dublin, upper end of Front, at 
Keyser's Alley; Ship Wilmington and George, 
Society Hill, by Anthony Whitely ; Ship Aground, 
Water, above Market; Unicorn, near the Draw- 
bridge, Water Street ; Stars, Elbow Lane, by John 
Etris ; Horse and Dray, Market Street; White Horse, 
Elbow Lane ; Valiant Dragoon, Front, opposite Black 
Horse Alley ; Queen's Head, Water Street, by Robert 
Davis ; Phoenix, Society Hill ; Tun, Water Street, by 
Thomas Mullan; Salutation, Front Street; Sassafras- 
Tree, Race Street; Golden Ball, Elm, between Second 
and Third, by John Barnhill ; Bird in Hand, Shippen 
Street, by John Crozier ; Cooper's Arms, by Issachar 
Davids; Twelve Cantons, Spring Garden, by Chris- 
topher Shiefly ; Rainbow, upper end of Second Street, 
Northern Liberties ; Bowling Green, at the Centre ; 
Unicorn, Prune Street, by John Chabord ; Admiral 
Kepp_ele, Southwark ; Jolly Sailor, Moyamensing, by 
Valentine Smith; St. George and the Dragon, by 
Widow Cummings, Frankford; Golden Fleece, Sec- 
ond, opposite Taylor's Alley; Danish Flag, Society 
Hill, by John Brandt ; Marquis of Granby, Northern 
Liberties, near the barracks, by Isaac Corrin ; Queen 
Charlotte's Head, Water near Market, by Samuel 
Francis ; City of Frankfort, Catharine Street, by 
John Fritz ; Red Lion, in Moreland ; King David and 
Harp, Water Street, near Market, by Thomas Grif- 
fith; Orange-Tree, Moyamensing, by John Belts; Ship 
Pennsylvania, corner of Front and Pewter Platter 
Alley ; Highlander on Horseback, by Abel Carpenter, 
upper end of Front Street; King of Prussia, by 
Francis Shires, Society Hill ; King of Prussia, Mar- 
ket Street, by Michael Huts ; Buck, on Rowse's road, 
Southwark ; Crooked Billet, Passyunk road, by Peter 
Kleckner; City of Manheim, Passyunk road, by Peter 
Hackner; City of Colerain, Walnut Street; Robin 
Hood, Wissahickon road ; Lord Loudon, Front, below 
the Drawbridge ; Nag's Head, Front, below the Draw- 
bridge ; Rising Sun, Germantown road ; Boatswain 
and Call, near the Drawbridge ; Highlander, by Abe 
Carpenter, Front, below the Drawbridge ; City of 
Philadelphia, Society Hill; Royal George, Front, 
below the Drawbridge; Boy and Boat, Arch Street 
Ferry ; Blue Bell, Society Hill ; Angel, near the sugar- 
house, above Poole's bridge, by Caspar Stoles ; Wheat 
Sheaf, Bristol road ; Siege of Louisburg, Front, below 
the Drawbridge; Bottle and Glass, opposite Mr. Philip 
Hurlburt's, Society Hill ; Mead House [mead, fresh 
cheese, and pies every night] ; Saddler's Arms, Ger- 
mantown, by Widow Macknett; Leopard, Front, near 
the Drawbridge, by Issachar Davids ; Gen. Blakeney's 



Head, Front Street, by Elizabeth Gant; Eed Lion, 
Second Street, by Jacob Magg ; City of Philadelphia, 
Society Hill, by George Leadbeater ; Stars, Elbow 
Lane, by Thomas Rogers ; Jolly Post Boy, near 
Frankford ; Ship " Hero," Front Street, by Widow 
Malaby ; Bunch of Grapes, formerly Bull's Head, 
Third, below Arch, by Josiah Davenport ; Horse and 
Dray, Passyunk road, half mile from the city, after- 
ward Whittington and Cat ; Upper Ferry, Ashton's ; 
King of Prussia, near the market, Germantown ; 
Wagon, Race Street, opposite Moravian Alley, by 
Yost Eberth ; Seven Stars, Second, near Arch, by 
Diedrick Rees; Admiral Keppele, between the 
Swedes' Church and the fort, fronting the river; 
Cross Keys, Chestnut Street, by Joseph Ogden ; 
Buffalo, Race Street ; White Horse, Elbow Lane, by 
John Cowpland ; Pennsylvania Farmer, by Charles 
Dilworth ; Indian Queen, Fourth, between Market 
and Chestnut, by John Little; Marquis of Granby, 
Market Street, next door to Presbyterian meeting- 
house; Golden Swan, Third, above Arch; Pennsyl- 
vania Farmer, near the new market, by Samuel 
Chesnut; Gen. Wolfe, South wark; Anvil and Double 
Cross Keys, by Benjamin Armitage, corner Fourth 
and Chestnut ; Vauxhall, on the agreeable banks of 
the Schuylkill, at Passyunk, by Thomas Mullan, for- 
merly of the Tun, on Water Street; Blue Bell, King- 
sessing, by Samuel Smith ; Drove of Cattle, .upper 
end of Race Street, by Lewis Saisengen ; Sign of Dr. 
Franklin, southwest corner of Walnut and Fifth, by 
William Hornby ; Huntsman and Hounds, old York 
road, Abington, by John Webb ; Jolly Post, South- 
wark; Rose, Third and Arch, by Ludwick Kuhn ; 
Fort, Society Hill, by John Thomas ; Queen of Hun- 
gary, by James Gilchrist; Cheesecake House, Fourth 
Street ; Masons' Arms, Walnut Street ; Roebuck, Ger- 
mantown ; Conestoga Wagon, Market Street ; Globe, 
south side of South Street, near the new hospital, by 
Clayton Biddle; King of Denmark, Second Street; 
Britannia, Walnut, near Front, by Ann Jones ; Foun- 
tain, Market Street, by Mary Biddle ; The Row Gal- 
ley, Front Street ; Green Tree, Race, between Second 
and Third; Prince of Orange, Second Street; Albe- 
marle, Northern Liberties, by Caspar Stawl ; Gen. 
Wolfe, upper end of Front Street, by Godfrey Lon- 

The following were in existence in 1785 : The 
Struggler, by Edmund Conner, Water Street, between 
Spruce and Pine ; Cork Arms, by John Conner, 
Water Street, below Walnut; Black Horse, by Isaac 
Connelly, Market Street, between Fourth and Fifth ; 
Plow, by Matthew Conrad, Third Street, above 
Market; Cordwainers' Arms, by James Culbertson, 
Walnut Street, below Second ; Harp and Crown, 
by William Carson, Third Street, above Market ; 
Dusty Miller and White Horse, by John Clemens, 
Chestnut Street, above Second ; Strap and Block, by 
Cook Lawreuce, Arch Street wharf; Saint George, 
southwest corner of Second and Arch Streets ; Blue 

Ball, Elbow Lane, near Third Street; Boatswain 
Hall, Front Street, between Walnut and Spruce; 
Bull's Head, by John Evans, Strawberry Alley ; Dr. 
Franklin, by John Fiegele, corner of Race and 
Second Streets; Bear, Second Street, between Race 
and Vine; Black Horse, by John Fritz, Second 
Street, between Vine and Callowhill ; the Rose, by 
Mrs. Fourrage, Race Street, between Fifth and Sixth ; 
Sportsman, by Charles Gordon, Water Street, between 
Walnut and Spruce; Red Lion, by David Gordon, 
Race Street, between Fourth and Fifth ; Leopard, 
Spruce Street, between Third and Fourth ; General 
Washington, Front Street, between Arch and Race ; 
King of Prussia, by Michael Hay, Race Street, 
between Third and Fourth ; Butchers' Arms, by 
Edward Handle, New Market Street, above Callow- 
hill; the Salute, by William Hood, Third Street, 
between Chestnut and Walnut; American Soldier, 
South Alley, between Fifth and Sixth Streets ; Red 
Cow, Water Street, between Race and Vine ; Blue 
Ball, corner of Sixth and Market Streets ; Samson 
and Lion, by John Eisenbrey, corner of Vine and 
Crown Streets ; Cross Keys, by Israel Israel, Third 
and Chestnut Streets ; Green Tree, by Andrew Kesler, 
Third Street, between Arch and Race ; Plow, Market 
Street, between Seventh and Eighth ; Seven Stars, 
by Charles Kugler, Fourth and Race Streets ; Buck, 
Michael Kraft, Second Street, between Race and 
Vine ; Golden Fleece, by Luke Ludwig, corner of 
Fourth and Lombard Streets ; Harp and Crown, 
Front Street, between Market and Chestnut; Foun- 
tain, by James McCutcheon, Second and Lombard 
Streets; Seven Stars, by John McKinley, Fourth 
and Chestnut Streets ; Jolly Sailor, by Robert Moffett, 
Second and Lombard Streets ; Mermaid, Second Street, 
between Pine and Lombard ; Rose, South Street, be- 
tween Fourth and Fifth ; Noah's Ark, by Ingellert 
Minzer, Second Street, between Vine and Callowhill ; 
Jolly Sailor, Eighth Street, between Chestnut and 
Walnut ; White Horse, Market Street, between Sixth 
and Seventh ; General Washington (Jacob Mytinger), 
Vine Street, above Second; Conestoga Wagon (Samuel 
Nicholas), Market Street, above Fourth ; King of Po- 
land (Philip Oellers), Vine Street, between Fifth and 
Sixth; Lamb (Francis Oskullion), Second Street, 
below Lombard ; Seven Stars, Market Street, between 
Front and Second ; Dragon and Horse, Walnut Street, 
between Front and Second ; Green Tree, Water Street, 
between Race and Vine ; Indian King (Mrs. Sidney 
Paul), Market Street, between Second and Third ; Hen 
and Chickens (Valentine Pegan), Spruce Street, 
between Front and Second; Louis the Sixteenth, 
South Street, between Fifth and Sixth ; Three Tuns 
(Sarah Potts), Vine Street, between Seventh and 
Eighth; Ship, Water Street, near Chestnut; Kouli 
Khan, Chestnut and Front Streets ; Horse and 
Groom, Sixth Street, between Market and Chestnut ; 
Bunch of Grapes (John Razer), Third Street, above 
Market; General Wayne (Tobias Rudolph), Penn 



and Pine Streets ; Harp and Crook, Water Street, 
near Spruce ; Rising Sun (Sarah Stimble), Market 
Street, above Front; Kouli Khan (Robert Stephens), 
Chestnut Street, below Second ; Horse and Groom, 
Strawberry Alley; Jolly Tar (John Stafford), Water 
Street, below Race ; White Horse, Second Street, 
between Vine and Callowhill ; Moon and Stars (Mary 
Switzer), Second Street, above Vine; Eagle, Fifth 
Street, above Race; Organ (William Shedecker), 
' Spruce Street, above Fourth ; White Horse, Straw- 
berry Alley; Three Jolly Irishmen, Water and Race 
Streets ; Cross Keys, Race Street, between Sixth and 
Seventh ; Darby Ram, Church Alley ; United States, 
Water Street, near Spruce; Indian Queen, Fourth 
Street, below Market; Rising Sun (Samuel Titmus) ; 
Wilkes and Liberty, Market Street wharf; Boar's 
Head, Elbow Lane ; Cumberland, Front Street, near 
Poole's bridge ; Turk's Head (Adam Weaver), Chest- 
nut Street, above Second; Eagle (George Weiss), 
Third Street, between Race and Vine ; Fox and 
Leopard, Pine and Penn Streets ; Cross Keys, Water 
Street, between Market and Arch ; Buck (George 
Yoe), Callowhill Street, between Second and Third. 

The following are of later date : The Taking of 
Major Andr6, Second Street, above Tammany ; the 
Seven Stars, Fourth Street, above Race ; William Tell, 
Race Street, above Twelfth ; General Warren, Sixth 
Street, below Pine; the Constitution and GuerriSre 
and Landing of Columbus, both on South Third 
Street; General Lafayette, Thirteenth and Callowhill 
Streets ; Cross Keys, Fourth Street, above Market ; the 
Indian Queen, below Market on Fourth Street ; Bust 
of Columbus, Chestnut Street, below Seventh, on Co- 
lumbia House ; Robert Fulton, Water Street and 
Chestnut ; Delaware House, sign of ship at sea, oppo- 
site Robert Fulton, on Chestnut Street ; Pennsylvania 
Farmer, Race Street, above Fourth ; White Swan, Race 
Street, below Fourth ; Golden Swan, Third Street, 
above Arch ; Penn's Treaty, at the monument ground, 
Kensington ; The Hornet and Peacock, an old frame 
building next to St. George's Church, Fourth Street ; 
Bull's Head, Third Street, above Callowhill, east side ; 
Black Bear, Front Street, west side, near Callowhill; 
Commodore Porter, Callowhill Street, below Second, 
east side ; and First Ward Northern Liberties Hotel 
adjoining; Penn Township .Guard, corner Willow 
Street and Ridge road ; sign of Second Company of 
Fencibles, southeast corner of Third and Coates 
Streets ; iron sign, Third Street, below Coates, east 
side ; Franklin, Third Street, above Buttonwood, east 
side ; Wagon and Horses, now Military Hall, Third 
Street, near Green. Later still we have Governor 
Simon Snyder, northeast corner of Crown and Cal- 
lowhill Streets ; Cross Keys, southwest corner of Race 
and Ninth Streets ; Wounded Tar, north side of Vine 
Street, above Eighth ; Bald Eagle, west side of Third 
Street, above Callowhill ; Tiger Hunt, north side of 
Vine Street, below Fourth ; Lion, west side of Second 
Street, below Noble ; Girard Bank and Surroundings, 

west side of Dock Street, below Third (McGowan's) ; 
Simon Bolivar, north side of Chestnut Street, above 
Sixth (full length) ; the White Horse, Market Street, 
above Thirteenth, in front of the Tivoli Circus ; the 
Sorrel Horse, Market Street, below Thirteenth ; the 
Golden Horse, Market Street, below Twelfth ; the 
Plow, Third Street, opposite Church Alley ; General 
Montgomery, Sixth Street, near South ; General 
Brown, kept by Simpson, northeast corner of Fifth 
and Buttonwood Streets; the Three Tuns (three 
wooden barrels strung crossways on an iron rod), Vine 
Street, below Eighth, where the church now stands ; 
Eclipse and Sir Henry, Broad Street and Centre 
Square, where the Tabernacle Presbyterian church 
now stands ; Constitution and GuerriSre, kept by 
William Herlick, afterward famous as a militia-fine 
collector; Samson and the Lion, southwest corner of 
Vine and Crown Streets; the Bull's Head, said to 
have been painted by Benjamin West, Strawberry 
Street; Washington, Lafayette, and Franklin, a 
slatted sign, Chestnut Street, opposite the old Chest- 
nut Street Theatre, above Sixth Street, afterward 
Second Street, below Lombard ; the Seven Presidents, 
Coates Street, above Ninth; the Volunteer (Vans- 
tavoren), Race Street, opposite Franklin Square ; 
Robert Fulton, northeast corner of Front and Chest- 
nut Streets ; Kouli Khan, northwest corner of Chest- 
nut and Front Streets ; Coat of Arms of the States 
of the Union, Callowhill Street, below Second ; Top- 
gallant (Hammitt), Cherry Street and Bryant's 
Court; Bird Pecking at Grapes, southwest corner 
of Third and Chestnut Streets, in the basement ; 
Patrick Lyon, Sixth Street, below Race ; Sheaff, 
Second Street, between Race and Vine; Barley 
Sheaff, Fourth Street, below Vine; General Wash- 
ington (Von Buskirk), Market Street, south side, 
between Seventh and Eighth Streets. 

Philadelphia at the present time (1884) can boast 
of some of the finest hotels in the country. The Con- 
tinental Hotel, located at the southeast corner of 
Chestnut and Ninth Streets, occupies the site of two 
famous buildings, — the old Philadelphia Museum, 
which occupied the southern portion of the lot on 
Sansom Street, and the Cooke Equestrian Circus Com- 
pany, which occupied that portion of the lot fronting 
Chestnut Street. The circus was opened to the public 
Aug. 28, 1837. The building subsequently became 
the National Theatre, under the management of Wil- 
liam E. Burton. Messrs. Welch & Lent and Ray- 
mond & Waring occupied the theatre building for 
some years as an amphitheatre. The museum and 
circus were both destroyed by fire, with much adjoin- 
ing property, on July 5, 1854. About 1858 the lot 
was secured by the Continental Hotel Company, and 
the hotel opened for the reception of guests Feb. 16, 
1860. The building is six stories in height on Chest- 
nut and Ninth Streets, and eight stories in the rear 
on Sansom Street, and covers forty-one thousand five 
hundred and thirty-six feet of ground. The principal 



story is supported by ornamented cast-iron piers; the 
first floor level with the street, which is used by 
the hotel, occupies twenty-four thousand six hun- 
dred and twenty feet of the whole area. The total 
number of rooms in the Continental is about seven 
hundred, with accommodations for about twelve hun- 
dred guests. The Continental Hotel Company is 
under the management of the following directors: 
Daniel Haddock, John Baird, John Hunter, Charles 

Ninth ; the St. Cloud, on Arch Street, above Seventh ; 
the Bingham, on the corner of Market and Eleventh 
Streets ; the Merchants', on North Fourth Street 
(this hotel was the largest in the city in 1837, when 
it was first opened) ; the American, Chestnut Street, 
between Fifth and Sixth; St. Stephen's, Chestnut 
Street, between Tenth and Eleventh ; the Washing- 
ton, Chestnut Street near Seventh, and Grand Cen- 
tral, Market Street. 

J. E. Kingsley & Co., Chestnut Street, corner of Ninth. 

Eeed, and Mr. Seltzer. J. E. Kingsley is the sole 
lessee. His son E. F. Kingsley and H. S. Brown are 
associated with him in the management of the hotel. 

The Girard House, directly opposite the Continen- 
tal, on the north side of Chestuut Street, has accom- 
modations for about one thousand guests. It occu- 
pies the site of the Fisher and Learning mansions. It 
was built by Messrs. George W. and J. G. Edwards, in 
1851, and opened in the following year. The architect 
was John McArthur, Jr., who also designed the Con- 
tinental and the La Pierre House. 

The La Pierre, or Lafayette Hotel, located on the 
west side of Broad Street, between Chestnut and San- 
som Streets, was also originally built by George W. 
and J. G. Edwards. It was opened for guests in Oc- 
tober, 1853, and was greatly enlarged and improved 
in 1883. 

Among the other hotels of the city we have the 
Colonnade, southwest corner of Chestnut and Fif- 
teenth Street ; the Irving, on Walnut Street, above 




Powder-Houses and Magazines. — The danger 
which might result from the careless storage of gun- 
powder began to make some impression upon the 
minds of the people about the year 1724. For three 
or four years previously legislation was sought for the 
purpose of reducing the danger of loss of property by 
fire. An act to prohibit the breaming of any vessel 
in any dock in the city with hot pitch, tar, etc., except 
at such places as should be appointed for that service 
by the city corporation, Was passed in 1721. The 
keeping of fire on board of vessels, candles excepted, 
when lying in port after eight o'clock, in the evening 
was prohibited, except upon permission by the mayor 
in case of sickness or extraordinary occasion. The 



old practice of cleansing city chimneys by setting fire 
to them and burning them out at the top, by which 
not only the house in which the practice occurred, 
but others in the neighborhood, were in danger, was 
prohibited under fine. Also the firing of squibs, ser- 
pents, rockets, and other fire-works in the city with- 
out the Governor's special license. In 1725 petitions 
were presented to the Assembly calling attention to 
the necessity of having a magazine for the storing of 
gunpowder. That dangerous article was frequently 
kept in stores and houses' by merchants and others. 
Such of them as were very careful frequently placed 
it on board of vessels lying upon the water. But 
as sailors were generally reckless, there was danger 
in that practice. In consequence of these represen- 
tations an act of Assembly passed on the 24th of Au- 
gust, 1725, which, after stating in the preamble the 
necessity of the establishment of some suitable maga- 
zine for the storage of gunpowder, recited that Wil- 
liam Chancellor, sailmaker, had been encouraged by 
some of the magistrates, merchants, and others " to 
build a suitable powder-house or store for the receipt 
of all the gunpowder which shall or may be imported 
into the said city on a piece of ground he lately pur- 
chased from Daniel Pegg, lying near the north end 
of the said city, adjoining to a swamp on the south 
side, and upon the king's high road upon the east end 
thereof." The location was north of Pegg's Run, 
south of the present Noble Street, west of the present 
Front Street, and east of the present New Market 
Street. The lot was on the west side of the king's 
high road to New York, and nearly on a line with a 
passage now called Emlen's Court, a portion of which 
was the old highway. It was in sufficient nearness to 
the river to allow the easy loading or unloading of 
the powder. Under the act Chancellor was appointed 
the' keeper, upon the direction that he should build 
" a good, substantial, tight, and secure" powder-house 
or store for gunpowder, of brick or stone, ... to be 
well boarded and covered, and so fit and capacious as 
may reasonably be expected will contain all the gun- 
powder to be from time to time imported into the said 

In consideration of these undertakings Chancellor 
was given authority to keep the magazine, he being 
accountable to the owners of the powder, " lightning 
and other unavoidable accidents excepted." At- 
tendance was necessary to be given daily at the 
powder-house between nine and eleven in the morn- 
ing, and one and three in the afternoon, and upon 
other occasions when necessary. The keeping of 
more than twelve pounds of gunpowder at any time 
within the city, or within two miles thereof, except at 
" the powder-store," was prohibited under penalty of 
ten pounds. Captains of vessels arriving in port 
were also obliged to deposit their powder with him 
upon arrival or coming to anchor. For his care 
Chancellor was allowed to charge for storage twelve 
pence per barrel per month, and proportional rates 

for half-barrels and casks for the first six months, and 
sixpence per barrel and proportionately for smaller 
quantities after the first six months. For delivery, 
"for twelve pounds or lesser quantity, sixpence above 
the storage. Penalties were denounced against the 
keeper of the powder-house for negligence. Under an 
act passed in 1701 " for preventing accidents that may 
happen by fire in the towns of Bristol (formerly called 
Buckingham), Philadelphia, Germantown, Darby, 
Chester, New Castle, and Lewes within this gov- 
ernment," it had been declared that not more than 
six pounds of gunpowder should be kept in houses, 
shops, or warehouses, unless it be forty perches dis- 
tant from any dwelling. This provision was repealed. 
The new act was directed to continue in force and 
effect for twenty-one years. The act of Assembly by 
which Chancellor was granted this power conferred 
the authority upon him, his executors and assigns. 
After the house was built Chancellor died, and this 
franchise remained in the family. Elizabeth Chan- 
cellor, daughter of William, petitioned the Assembly 
in 1746 for a renewal of the privilege. She stated 
that her father was dead, and there were no other 
means of supporting his orphan children except from 
the profits of the office. She asked that the right of 
keeping the powder-house should be renewed. In 
the mean while the district of the United States had 
increased in population, and the inhabitants con- 
sidered the continuance of the powder-house in their 
neighborhood detrimental to their interests. A pro- 
test to the Assembly against the renewal of the 
powder-house right to Miss Chancellor was sent. 
The remonstrants represented that if the magazine 
were removed many good tenements with wharves and 
stores would soon be begun ; that a market-house 
would be established in the place laid out for that 
purpose (at the intersection of Callowhill and New 
Market Streets) ; and that the prosperity of the 
neighborhood would be thereby insured. These re- 
monstrances prevented immediate action, but on the 
8th of May, 1747, an act was passed in which the 
original grant to Chancellor was recited, and it was 
declared that Elizabeth Chancellor, acting executrix 
under the will of her father, on behalf of herself and 
her orphan brothers and sisters, should be entitled to 
all the perquisites, fees, and rewards secured by her 
father under the previous act, for one year, " and 
from thence until some future provision be made by 
act of Assembly, and no longer." Capt. William 
Hill was the deputy under William Chancellor and 
his daughter. 

In June, 1748, there being considerable fear of the 
coming up the river of hostile privateers, it became 
a matter of prudence to guard the magazine. The 
Provincial Council, upon the rumor that there were 
three privateers in the river, took some action: 

" Order'd, That the Keeper of the Powder House be Bent for; & being 
come and examined as to the condition of the Powder house & the number 
of men who had watch'd there & how many were necessary to guard it 



as a watch ; it was order'd by the Board that the Windows shou'd be 
Btopp'd up & that four or five Men shou'd be kept in Pay at four shillings 
per Day for a Guard." 

In April, 1754, Dr. William Chancellor sent a peti- 
tion to the Assembly asking that the profits arising 
from the management of the powder-house should 
be continued to his two younger sisters and William 
Hill, who had hitherto been chiefly supported and 
maintained thereby. This petition was laid upon the 
table. The last act of the Assembly secured the right 
to Miss Chancellor until a new law was passed. As 
the Assembly did nothing in relation to Dr. Chan- 
cellor's petition on behalf of his younger sisters, the 
opinion became prevalent that the powder-house 
grant to the Chancellors had expired. The Contri- 
butionship Mutual Insurance Company (Hand-in- 
Hand), by petition, in 1760, stated that, in conse- 
quence of the belief that the powder-house act was 
no longer in force, it was a common practice to store 
gunpowder among the buildings in the city, and to 
draw it through the streets without protection by cov- 
ering the casks, a practice very dangerous and the 
cause of much uneasiness to the people. Notwith- 
standing these representations, the Assembly made 
no enactment upon the subject. The magazine 
remained in use for the storage of gunpowder, 
although the placing of the material there was not 
compulsory, as formerly. In 1776, before the Decla- 
ration of Independence, gunpowder then had become 
so great a necessity that the building of powder-mills 
was encouraged. 1 

1 The following powder-mills were offered to be builtunder the patron- 
age of the Committee of Safety, who offered to lend each builder one 
hundred and fifty pounds on security, and to supply each mill with fifty 
tons of saltpetre per week. A premium of one hundred dollars was 
offered for the first mill put in operation, fifty dollars for the second, and 
thirty dollars for the third, and it was promised that these three mills 
first erected should have a preference during the year in contracts over 
the others. The following offers were made to the committee by the 
persons named, the situations proposed for the mills being also stated. 

Dr. Robert Harris, on Valley Stream or Orum Creek, twenty-five miles 
from the city. 

George Lush, Stony Eun, Philadelphia County, fifteen miles from the 

George Lush, Mill Creek, Philadelphia County, ten miles from the 

Henry Hubback {or Huber), Swamp Creek, Lower Milford, Bucks Co., 
on the Bethlehem road, thirty-seven miles from the city. 

John Flack, on a stream emptying into the Neshaminy, Buckingham, 
Bucks Co., twenty-five miles from Philadelphia. 

Thomas Heimberger, near the Yellow Spring, Windsor township, 
Chester Co. 

William Thompson, on the Neshaminy, Bucks County, twenty-two 
miles from the city. 

Dr. Van Leer, of Gloucester County, N. J., proposition to turn a full- 
ing-mill into a powder-mill. 

Harris, Heimberger, and Lush built their millB, and received their 
loans. It is doubtful whether the others did anything. In February 
the Assembly resolved that it was necessary to erect a powder-mill under 
direction of the Committee of Safety. Congress also ordered the erection 
of a Continental powder-mill. The Province of Pennsylvania paid for 
it. It was established on French Creek, Chester County. Proposals 
were published for the discovery of "sulphur ore." They brought 
reports of the discovery of the substance supposed to be wanted near 
Tork Pa. ; from Jacob FreeB, ten miles from Elizabethtown, N. J. ; from 
Elias Boudinot, and also from Joseph Borden, at Bordentown. 

Lewis Nicola, in March, 1776, prepared a plan of a 
powder-magazine. That which was in existence, he 
said, " was very unfit for the purpose for which it was 
erected. ... As badly situated as possible in a low, 
swampy place, unprotected by a surrounding wall or 
fence, and not secured from fire, accidental or de- 
signed, whereas magazines should as much as possi- 
ble be placed in dry. airy situations, so as to admit a 
free circulation and at the same time well guarded 
against fire." A description of the proper building 
for a magazine, with the drawing of a plan, was given. 
The walls were to be of a proper thickness, with con- 
trivances for free ventilation to keep the powder dry, 
the magazine to be vaulted and covered above the 
arch, with a roof leaving a space within. The whole 
to be surrounded by a brick wall, at the two diagonal 
corners of which were to be placed sentry-boxes, each 
of which would command a view of two sides of the 
magazine. " The most suitable place I know of near 
this city is a piece of waste ground on the west side 
of Fourth Street, opposite the barracks ; this situation 
is airy and convenient for the security of the maga- 
zine, as sentries could be supplied from the Barrack 
Guard, which would save ye trouble and expence of 
a particular guard for the security of the Powder." 

The Committee of Safety, on the 13th of April, 
ordered a new powder-magazine to be built by Isaac 
Coats and William Melcher, capable of holding a 
thousand barrels of powder. The place selected is 
not stated in the minutes of the Councils, but it was 
upon the northeast corner of Frauklin Square. Store- 
houses were procured for the storage of salt, saltpetre, 
and other provincial supplies at Germantown. Later 
in the year a committee appointed to ascertain the 
best place for a magazine of military stores reported 
that the heights on the north side of Wissahickon 
Creek afforded a very convenient situation, and Were 
capable of berhg defended at great advantage, and 
that a fort on the hill on the Ridge road just above 
Van Derin's mill (at the mouth of the Wissahickon) 
would command a wide space of country. In 1787 
an act was passed to secure the city of Philadelphia 
against danger from gunpowder, which forbade the 
storage of a greater amount than thirty pounds of 
powder at a time in any place but the magazine in 
the public square between Sixth and Seventh, Eace 
and Vine Streets, under a fine of twenty pounds. 

In April, 1790, the necessity of removing the pow- 
der-house was considered ; the Assembly passed reso- 
lutions in favor of that course. The Council selected 
a lot on Walnut Street, bordering on the river Schuyl- 
kill, which belonged to Col. John Patton, which was 
valued at five hundred and sixty-five pounds specie. 
A committee of the Supreme Executive Council, to 
which the matter was referred, reported the following 
plan in May of the same year : 

"The walls round the yard of the magazine to be brick, and on a line 
with the north side of Walnut Street, and the west side of Ashton Street, 
and to he eight feet high besides the capping, which ia to be stone. 



" The powder-bouse, or magazine, to be forty feet east and west, and 
sixty feet north and south, and to stand back from the wall on Walnut 
Street twenty feet clear, and from Ashton Street the north and west 
wallB of the yard fifteen feet clear. 

" The two gable-end walls to be two feet thick of stone, and the two 
side walls two feet six inches thick of stone, or if double, two feet thick 
of stone, opening three inches, and a four and a half inch wall inside 
all round. 

" The height from the floor to the spring of the arch to be eight feet, 
small arches to be turned all under the lower floor in order to keep it 
dry. The height of the first floor to be six inches above the level of the 

" A small bouse for the keeper at the southeast corner of Walnut and 
Frout Street, on Schuylkill, to be fifteen feet six inches on Walnut 
Street, and fifteen feet on Frout Street, two stories high, the first story 
to be eight feet in the clear, and the second story seven feet three inches 
in the clear, with a celler under the whole, and to be finished plain." 

The officers of the city corporation were opposed to 
the establishment of the powder-magazine at that 
place. A memorial was sent to the Supreme Execu- 
tive Council requesting that the building of the maga- 
zine might be postponed until the next session of the 
Assembly. There was postponement accordingly, 
but the original plan was adhered to. Patton was 
paid for his lot, in December, £664 14s. Id. in paper 
money, which was equivalent, at fifteen per cent, dis- 
count, to £565 specie. The magazine and keeper's 
house was paid for shortly afterward, and cost £1706 
3s. Id. The lot thus purchased was a full square, and 
contained about four acres three quarters and thirty 
perches of land. 

In April, 1795, an act was passed for the inspection 
of gunpowder. It was stated in the preamble that 
Joseph Leacock, of Philadelphia, had invented an 
engine called "a pendulum powder-proof, with a 
graduating arch and catch-pull, by which it is con- 
ceived that the force of gunpowder may be proved 
by actual experiment." David Rittenhouse, Francis 
Gurney, and Thomas Proctor were appointed com- 
missioners. They were directed to purchase at least 
two pendulum powder-proofs, settle the standard of 
gunpowder, and mark the graduations in the arch. 
After that was done the inspector of gunpowder, an 
officer created under the act, was ordered to ascertain 
the strength of manufactured gunpowder by means 
of the standard. It was also ordered that all gun- 
powder manufactured in the State should be placed 
in barrels of certain sizes and deposited in the maga- 
zine. From the Northeast Square the powder-house 
was removed to Walnut Street wharf, Schuylkill, in 
1791. On a map published in 1794, the site of this 
building is marked at the northwest corner of Ashton 
[now Twenty-third] and Walnut Streets. It did not 
remain there very long without exciting apprehension. 
The Legislature was memorialized in 1806, by citizens 
as well as by Councils, against the continuance of the 
magazine at that place. 

In the succeeding year, Thomas Leiper, Matthew 
Shaw, Stephen Decatur, Sr., and John Swigor, were 
appointed commissioners to sell the powder-magazine 
building and lot, at Walnut and Ashton Streets, and 
build a new one or two buildings if necessary. One 

was not to be more than a mile from the city, for the 
accommodation of traders, and not to contain more 
than ten tons of gunpowder. The other, or others, 
were to hold the article in larger quantities, and 
might be built at a distance of not less than four 
miles from the city, The next year the commis- 
sioners reported that they had located a site for the 
powder-magazine about four miles from the city, and 
the Assembly made an appropriation of about five 
thousand dollars for the construction of the building. 
The place selected was upon Power's Lane, in the 
neck, near the Schuylkill, called afterward Magazine 
Lane. The building, of stone, massive and strong, 
was secluded from the ordinary route of travel. 
Trees were planted around it, and apparently every 
care taken to prevent accident. 

In order to prevent danger as much as possible, it 
was directed, in 1818, that the manner in which 
powder should be removed from vessels in the Dela- 
ware River to the magazine or arsenal on the Gray's 
Ferry road should be by landing at the wharf above 
the Point House on the Delaware, commonly known 
as the powder-wharf. That it should be carried along 
Keeler's Lane westward along said lane and the bound- 
ary of South wark; thence up said road to Passyunk 
road ; thence up the said road to the Federal road ; 
thence west along the same to Gray's Ferry road ; 
thence up the same direct to the arsenal on the east 
bank of the Schuylkill. Gunpowder brought down 
the river Delaware was directed to be landed at 
Conoroe & Co.'s wharf, in the village of Richmond ; 
thence up Ann Street west to Frankford road ; down 
that road to the Black Horse and Mud Lane [Mont- 
gomery Avenue] ; thence to Sixth Street; down the 
latter to Hickory Lane [Poplar Street] ; thence west, 
crossing the Ridge road, to Broad Street, and to the 
Callowhill turnpike road ; then west to Schuylkill 
Front Street [Twenty-second] ; down the same, and 
by way of the Gray's Ferry road, to the destination. 
The intention was that the powder should be carried 
at a distance from the built-up portions of the city. 
Vessels bringing powder down the Delaware were 
required to keep in the midway of the channel until 
the time of landing. Gunpowder brought from the 
west side of the Schuylkill was obliged to pass by 
Gray's Ferry, or, if it could not be passed with safety 
by Lancaster bridge, by Callowhill Street ; thence by 
Schuylkill Front Street to Gray's Ferry road. By act 
of Assembly, passed in 1856, it was ordered that 
" every carriage used for conveying gunpowder or 
gun-cotton within the city of Philadelphia . . . shall 
. . . have painted on each side thereof, in letters 
distinctly legible to all passers-by, the word 'gun- 
powder.' " 

The magazine was abandoned by the State under 
authority of the act of April 29, 1874, by which it 
was ordered that the possession of the rented prem- 
ises situated on Magazine Lane, near a branch of the 
Pennsylvania Railroad, in the city of Philadelphia, 



now used and occupied as a State powder-magazine, 
be surrendered within twelve months, and the lease 
canceled, and that the office of superintendent be 
discontinued. The ground on Power's Lane, belong- 
ing to the magazine, was directed to be sold at public 

Barracks. — In 1755 the expedition against Fort 
Du Quesne (Pittsburgh), then held by the French, 
set out from Fredericksburg, under Maj.-Gen. Ed- 
mund Braddock. Two regiments of foot, the Forty- 
fourth, under Col. Sir Peter Halkett, and the Forty- 
eighth, under Col. Thomas Dunbar, had been sent 
from Ireland, and arrived at Alexandria, Va., in 
March. Governor Dinwiddie, of Virginia, had noti- 
fied Governor Eobert Hunter Morris, of Pennsyl- 
vania, of the expected coming of these troops as early 
as the preceding January. The necessity for supplies 
was pointed out, and assistance was asked from the 
Assembly of Pennsylvania. As that body was in a 
chronic state of controversy with the Governor, little 
help was to be expected. The Assembly had before 
that time attempted to borrow five thousand pounds 
on its own credit, and it was proposed that a portion 
of the money should be laid out in the purchase of 
flour to be sent to the mouth of the Conococheague, 
for the use of the British troops. The quartermaster- 
general, Sir John St. Clair, requested that roads 
should be opeDed from the inhabited parts of the 
Province of Pennsylvania westward toward the Ohio, 
to facilitate the movement of the troops and the 
transportation of supplies. The Assembly delayed 
compliance, but finally passed an act to appropriate 
twenty-five thousand pounds in bills of credit for the 
king's use. There had been a dispute about such a 
bill in the previous year. The Assembly had sanc- 
tioned it, but the Governor would not approve of it. 
The new bill was of the same character, and for 
twenty-five thousand pounds. But the Governor, 
who was quite as stubborn as the Assembly, again 
refused his attest, so that there was no assistance to 
the royal troops. Governor Morris went to Alex- 
andria in April, and took part in a council composed 
of Gen. Braddock, Admiral Keppel, and the Governors 
of five of the colonies. The plan of the campaign was 
resolved upon. There was a disposition on the part 
of the Assembly of Pennsylvania to give assistance 
to the king, provided the method of doing it was 
according to the desires of the majority. The 
House resolved to borrow ten thousand pounds on 
its own account and without reference to the ap- 
proval of the Governor. But lenders could not be 
found. In the emergency the Assembly took another 
plan, and resolved to issue paper money to the amount 
of fifteen thousand pounds ; and although the Gov- 
ernor refused to give his sanction, the notes were 
issued and put into circulation. Active measures 
were taken to assist Gen. Braddock. The road west- 
ward was opened as far as possible, and as rapidly as 
circumstances would permit. Benjamin Franklin 

and others obtained a large number of horses and 
wagons in the interior of the province for transpor- 
tation. Braddock commenced his march from Fort 
Cumberland on the 12th of June. Governor Morris 
appointed the 19th of June as a day of fasting and 
of prayer for the success of the British arms. 

On the 9th of July the advance of the British and 
Provincial troops, with which was Halkett's regiment, 
were attacked by the French and Indians within sight 
of the Monongahela River. The invading force was 
defeated with great slaughter. Braddock and Hal- 
kett, with sixty-two other officers, were killed. Gen. 


Braddock was buried near where he was killed, in what 
is now called Wharton township, Fayette Co., Pa. A 
large number of soldiers were killed or wounded. 
Of eleven hundred and fifty men in the action, it was 
estimated that not more than three hundred escaped 
without injury. They retreated and fell back upon 
Dunbar's division, stationed in reserve at Little 
Meadows. A panic prevailed even there. The artil- 
lery was destroyed, and the whole force pushed on to 
Fort Cumberland. When the news of this disaster 
reached Philadelphia great consternation prevailed. 
Governor Morris convened the Assembly. A bill was 
passed immediately to raise fifty thousand pounds for 
the king's use by a tax on all persons and property in 
the province. Then was renewed the standing quar- 



rel between the Governor, representing the proprie- 
tary, and the Assembly. Morris was quite willing that 
the people should be taxed in their persons and their 
property, but he would not sanction any measure that 
would lay taxes on the proprietary estates. While 
this dispute was in progress a number of citizens 
agreed to subscribe five thousand pounds, which 
would be about equal to the tax on the proprietary 
estates, and tendered the amount for public assist- 
ance. 1 The Assembly would not receive the money, 
but sent the proposition to the Governor " as a fur- 
ther security if he would give his consent to the 
fifty-thousand-pound bill." He did not accede. 
There was recommendation of a voluntary subscrip- 
tion of ten thousand pounds, but nothing was done 
to forward a collection. 

While these controversies were raging the fugitives 
under command of Col. Dunbar were marching slowly 
toward Philadelphia. The necessity of quarters for 
the troops was evident. As the Assembly could not 
be relied upon, Governor Morris, on the 1st of August, 
made application to the mayor and Common Council 
of the city, stating that he had been apprised by Col. 
Dunbar of his intended coming, and that he would 
require quarters for about one hundred officers and 
twelve hundred men. The city corporation was ap- 
plied to to furnish these conveniences. A hospital 
was needed and lodging for the soldiers. The reply 
from Mayor Plumsted, Recorder Francis, and alder- 
men Strettel and Mifflin, was very brief. They said, 
" We know of no law that authorizes us to make such 
provisions, and therefore have it not in our powers to 
obey your orders." The Assembly was appealed to, 
and replied by reference to the act of Parliament for 
the maintaining and billeting of soldiers. The troops 
under Col. Dunbar reached the city about the 29th of 
August, and encamped between Pine and Cedar 
Streets, west of Fourth. The house of Jacob Duch6, 
at the northeast corner of Third and Pine Streets, was 
rented for a hospital at fifteen pounds for six months. 
The soldiers did not remain long in the city. They 
were ordered to Albany. After a rest of about four 
weeks, during which they made illuminations and 
kindled bonfires in honor of the victory of Gen. Johnson 
over the French at Lake George, which was followed 
by an entertainment and ball given by the officers at 
the State-House, they closed their visit with a review 
of the whole force, during which the simple people 
of the city, unused to military display, were much 
amazed by the proficiency of the artillerists, who 
fired a field-piece " ten times in one minute." The 
soldiers took up the line of march about the end of 
September, being much rested and improved, and 

1 These public-Bpirited persons were William Plumsted, Samuel Mc- 
Call, Sr., John Wilcox, Samuel and Archibald McCall, William Allen, 
Thomas Cadwalader, Alexander Huston, Amos Strettel, Joseph Turner, 
Joseph Sims, John Kearsley, David Franks, John Kearsley, Jr., John 
Gibson, John Wallace, George O'Kill, Samuel Mifflin, Townsend White, 
Joseph Wood, and John Bell. 

having been kindly treated by the inhabitants of the 

In the latter part of the year the city corporation 
remonstrated to the Assembly in regard to the state 
of the province, a misfortune made more apparent by 
the fact that the defeat of Braddock had stimulated 
a rising among the Indians on the western frontiers 
of the province and the slaughter of defenseless 
inhabitants. A strong remonstrance was sent by the 
city corporation, the result of which was authority 
for the association of companies of volunteers. Under 
this power, before the end of December, 1755, there 
were eighteen companies in the association, beside five 
independent companies of artillery, foot grenadiers, 
and horsemen. 

How these troops were accommodated as to armories, 
arsenals, places of meeting and drill is not known. In 
the succeeding year, upon the occasion of the review 
of the city regiment, under Col. Benjamin Franklin, 
" each company met at the house of its respective 
captain," then marched down Second Street and to 
the new market below Pine Street. The first company 
halted, and as the second company approached, fired 
and retreated, and was followed by the second also 
firing. This movement was imitated by the other com- 
panies in succession, the intention being to exercise 
the soldiers in street firing. There were four cannon 
attached to the regiment. On the 12th of August the 
proclamation of war between England and France, 
which was declared in May, 1756, was republished in 
the city. Shortly afterward Lord Loudon, commander- 
in-chief in America, wrote from Albany to Governor 
Denny, stating that a considerable body of troops for 
the defense of North America were to be sent over 
from England, that it was required that the colonies 
respectively should provide for all such charges as 
would arise from furnishing quarters and other neces- 
saries for the troops, the means of conveyance and the 
transportation of supplies, the formation of a general 
service-fund, promotion of enlistments, etc. It was 

2 Duncan Cameron, a private soldier in this expedition, whose journal 
has been published, spoke gratefully of the assistance received by the 
troops from the country people during their march and upon the road. 
He said, "The same tender compassion and humanity continued when 
we arrived and encamped on the south aide of Philadelphia. The Phila- 
delphians' hearts and houses were opened to us in the most affectionate 
and tender manner, and I must not forget the tender compassion of their 
good housewives; for they being informed that our living had been 
chiefly on flesh, the women of Market Street and Church Alley, as I was 
told, formed an Association for regaling us with apple pies and rice 
pudding, which they generously affected ; and their example was fol- 
lowed by a great many women in the city, and though some may think 
little of this, yet certainly it was a great refreshment to some of ua. 
And, indeed, during our whole stay, there was scarcely a day passed but 
our sick and prisoners were refreshed through their humanity. And I 
must not forget mentioning that one of our soldiers being condemned 
to be hanged for some misdemeanor, which they apprehended did not 
deserve death, waB, through the intercession of some women of good 
credit and note in that city, pardoned of his offenses ; and, indeed, a great 
number of the inhabitants of all ranks and degrees joined in application 
for the same purpose. For the people of that province are so humane 
and tender-hearted that they cannot bear to see any person put to death 
fur scarcely any offense but murder." 



also said, "and as his Majesty is at present graciously 
pleased to make such allowance toward victualling 
his troops as must greatly remove all Difficulty of 
Quartering as to that Article, I must expect that iu 
the article of Lodging and such other nesessarys as 
are furnished in Quarters in Great Britain in Time 
of war, Your Province will more chearfully make 
full and proficient Provision. I must therefore beg 
of you that you will acquaint the People of your 
Province, but when I shall have occasion to put his 
Majesty's Troops into Quarters that I do and must 
expect to find such as are necessary in your province.'' 
"The Assembley endeavored to evade compliance 
by adopting two British acts in regard to Mutiny & 
Desertion and the quartering and billetting of soldiers 
for the payment of their quarters in England." The 
latter the King's Council said was inapplicable " to a 
colony in the time of war, in the case of troops raised 
for their protection by the authority of the Parliament 
of Great Britain.'' In October, Lord Loudon again 
wrote to Governor Denny, " that it was necessary for 
him to look out for winter quarters for the troops, and 
that he would send to Phila., one battallion of Royal 
Americans, and 2 independent companies, and that 
he desired quarters to be furnished." The Assembly 
prepared a bill which was nearly the same as that 
which had already been repealed in England. In 
this emergency application was made to the city 
corporation. The act of Assembly directed the bil- 
leting of its soldiers on the public-houses. The 
Common Council ascertained that there were one 
hundred and seventeen taverns in the city. There 
were about five hundred and fifty men in the Royal 
American Sixty-second Regiment, and an independent 
company. Capt. Tullekin, of the Sixty-second, came 
in advance of the battalion to make arrangements for 
the quarters. He wanted the use" of a place for a 
hospital, also a store-house and a guard-room. The 
keepers of the public-houses at first supposed that 
they would receive a shilling a day for each soldier, 
and they were tempted to misrepresent the extent of 
their accommodations. A message on the subject was 
sent to the Assembly, which refused to do anything 
but to pass the bill determined upon. While this 
controversy was in progress, the troops had arrived 
under the command of Col. Bouquet. 

On the 15th of December the Governor represented 
to the Council that "the King's Forces still remained 
in a most miserable condition, neither Assembly, Com- 
missioners, nor Magistrates having done anything to 
relieve them, though the weather grew more pinch- 
ing and the Small Pox was increasing among the 
Soldiers to such a Degree that the whole Town would 
soon become a Hospital. That Col. Bouquet, being a 
Foreigner, 1 was loath to take violent Measures ; but 

1 Ool. Henry Bouquet was a native of Switzerland, and was born at 
Rolle in 1719. He had been in the Dutch Bervice and in that of Sardinia, 
and entered the British army as lieutenant-colonel in 1756. Under an 
act of Parliament, passed in the latter year, the Koyal American Regi- 

if something was not instantly done he hoped the 
Governor would issue a Warrant to the Sheriff to 
assign him Quarters in private Houses. That the 
Public House keepers were in general miserably poor, 
and had no Beds or necessaries, and were not in 
Ability to provide them. In short, that he was 
cruelly and barbarously treated, and urged the Gov- 
ernor to come to Resolutions instantly that the Sol- 
diers might be instantly relieved, and an Hospital 
provided. He added that the new Hospital [Penn- 
sylvania Hospital J was promised to him by the Man- 
agers, but they drew back from their promises, and 
he could neither get the new Hospital nor the old 
one, 2 nor any House for an Hospital." An effort was 
made to obtain additional accommodations in the 
public-houses, but with no success. The Governor 
then sent for James Coultas, the sheriff, and informed 
him that he was about to order him to quarter the 
soldiers in private houses. Coultas asked leave to 
inform some of his friends that such a step would be 
taken, representing also that, in case quarters were not 
provided, " there might be an easy accommodation, 
as there were plenty of empty houses in town, and 
none but straw beds were required, with a few neces- 
saries that might be very soon provided." The sheriff 
showed this warrant, which had been intrusted to 
him but not served upon him, to some persons, and 
leading members of the Assembly became aware of 
the intention to issue it. The result was a message 
from the Assembly to the Governor, expressing sur- 
prise at the intimation as to what was intended to 
be done, and hoping that he would act according to 
the law passed a few days before. 8 Members of the 
Council were inclined to go into a long discussion. 
The Governor said he would have no altercation, and 
himself penned the following imperative message : 

" Gentlemen, — The King's troops must he quartered. With respect 
to the Insufficiency of the late Act I refer you to my Message of the 
Eighth Instant, delivered immediately after the passing of it ; and I see 
no Reason from any Thing that has occurred since to alter my Opinion. 

"Wb, Denny. 
" Dec. IS, 1756." 

ment (Sixty-second) was authorized to be formed of four battalions, 
each of one thousand men, to be recruited from German and Swiss 
settlers in America. The officers were of necessity required to be pro- 
ficient in the German language, and the act authorized the appointment 
of foreign Protestants, who had served abroad as officers of experience, 
to rank as such in America only. Ool. Bouquet, in co-operation with 
Gen. Forbes, repulsed the French and Indian attack at Loyalhanna, 
Oct. 12, 1756, and participated in the operations which were succeeded 
by the capture of Fort Du Quesne. Sent from Canada with troops for 
the relief of Fort Pitt, he defeated a large .Indian force Aug. 5-6, 1763, 
and reached the fort with supplies. He commanded the famous expedi- 
tion against the Ohio Indians in October, 1764, as a result of which the 
Shawanese, Delawares, and others were compelled to make peace at 
Tuscarawas. He was made brigadier-general for this service in 1765, 
and died at Pensacola, Fla., in 1766. 

2 The new hospital was at Eighth and Ninth and Spruce and Pine 
Streets. The old hospital was the building first occupied by the man- 
agers on Market Street, near Fifth. 

8 This was " an act for extending several sections of an act of Parlia- 
ment passed in the twenty-ninth year of the present reign, entitled ' An 
Act for preventing mutiny and desertion, and for the better payment of 
the army and their quarters.' " It was substantially a re-enactment of 
the act of 1755, which had been repealed in England. 



When the Assembly received this mandate it 
created astonishment. The day was Saturday; the 
House remained in session all the afternoon, and did 
not adjourn until Monday, as had been usual. There 
was a session on Sunday, on which day a message 
was sent to the Governor, in which it was represented 
that the members did not fully understand all the 
particulars, and that the Governor had not given full 
information. They protested that they were desirous 
that the troops should have good quarters. The As- 
sembly had lately " shown their Regard for the Sol- 
diery by voluntarily presenting Conveniances and 
Refreshments to the Officers, and furnishing provis- 
ions and Cloathing for the Soldiers of the King's 
Forces to the Amount of Many Thousand Pounds." 
The Governor replied that moderation was agreeable 
to him, notwithstanding which, " There might have 
been a Governor who would have told you the whole 
Tenor of that Message was indecent, frivolous, and 
evasive ; That the Reception of His Majesty's Troops 
in this City shows want of Humanity and Gratitude, 
for you will please to remember that they were raised 
by Parliament for the Defence of these Colonies. 1 
For my Part, Gentlemen, I shall always avoid Dis- 
putes, but am determined to do my Duty to my King 
and Country." The Governor added that sixty-two 
beds were wanted for one hundred and twenty-four 
men, who lay upon straw, and quarters for recruits 
who arrive every day. There was a committee of 
conference sent by the House, through which there 
was a great deal of protestation and explanation. In 
conclusion the report upon the Council minutes says, 
" Upon the whole there was an abundance of breath, 
Passion, and Rudeness on the part of the committee." 
A letter was sent to the mayor by Governor Denny, 
and that officer represented that he was doing the 
best he could to accommodate the soldiers. The 
mayor's official return afterward still showed that 
there was a deficiency in the number of beds and 
other accommodations for soldiers. A. guard-room, 
a store-room, and hospital were provided as a result 
of this quarrel without much delay, but beyond that 
the officers and soldiers were compelled to get along 
as well as they could at the public-houses. The 
latter were furnished by the provincial commissioners, 
who were named in the act of December, 1756. They 
were William Masters, Joseph Fox, John Baynton, 
John Hughes, and Joseph Galloway. In the estimates 
of expenses for 1757, the cost of constructing the 
barracks was set down at ten thousand pounds. Some 
time afterward the commissioners, under authority of 
the act of Assembly, proceeded to erect barrack build- 
ings for the accommodation of the troops. The loca- 
tion determined upon for the site of the barracks 
was a lot on the south side of Mulberry or Arch 
Street, west of Tenth. The foundations were dug 
out, and the plans were agreed upon, but the agent 

1 An allusion to the aid given to Braddock and Dunbar. 

of the proprietary who owned the lot made objec- 
tion. The commissioners therefore abandoned that 
ground and bought a large lot in the Northern Lib- 
erties bounded on the east by Second Street, and 
northward by Green Street, named after Thomas 
Green, an early owner of the ground. Southward 
the ground extended toward Bloody Lane [Noble 
Street], and westward beyond Third Street. It was 
substantially of a square form, but the lines were 
irregular upon the south and west. Afterward, 
when Third Street was opened, a portion of the lot, 
an irregular strip of ground, was on the west side of 
that street, and when Tammany Street was opened, 
after the barracks were no longer in military use, a 
narrow gore, no wider than two or three feet, at Second 
Street, extended on the south side of Tammany Street, 
toward Third, gradually widening to the westward. 
The title was taken in the name of Joseph Fox, by 
two conveyances, Sept. 17, 1757. The northern portion 
of the ground was purchased from Anthony Wilkin- 
son, and the southeast portion from Michael Hillegas. 
Here the commissioners proceeded to erect buildings 
for barracks. In doing so they acted independently 
of Governor Denny, with whom they had no commu- 
nication. They were members of the Assembly, rep- 
resenting and carrying out the will of that body. 
They had no consultation with the Governor, but 
settled upon a plan to suit themselves. 

Col. Haldiman, of the Second Battalion, Sixty- 
second or Royal Lancers Regiment, was of opinion 
that the plan adopted was not a good one. His second 
objection was that he disapproved of the place where 
the barracks were to be situated. The only reason he 
(Col. Haldiman) gave against the place was that 
he thought the buildings should be so situated that, 
in case of need, there might be some possibility of 
throwing up an intrenchment around them, " from 
whence," said Lord Loudon, " it occurs to me that in 
case you should have any thoughts of making a Fort 
hereafter by the Town, you ought to benefit by those 
Barracks, so as to build them where you propose to 
have the Fort by which you will have so much of 
your Work ready done without creating an additional 
Expence. The thought can do you no harm, altho' 
I foresee that probably in the first place all the 
Ground near the Town is granted away, and in the 
second the Province will build those Barracks, with a 
view to turn them, after the War is over, either to 
Storehouses or a Manufactory." 

In September, 1757, the Second Battalion of the 
Royal Americans (Col. Haldiman), en route to Car- 
lisle, Pa., stopped in this city during the march. On 
that occasion the manner in which the barracks were 
being constructed was submitted to the colonel's 
judgment, as to the propriety of the plan. Lieuten- 
ant-Governor Denny, in September, gave to the Coun- 
cil a statement in reference to this business; "the 
Governor likewise related to the Council the strange 
Conduct of the Commissioners with respect to Bar- 



racks, that they had made Choice of the Ground, dug 
the Foundation, entered into Contracts with Work- 
men, agreed upon a Plan, then changed their Minds, 
chose another Place, altered the Plan, purchased a 
Quantity of Ground, and were at work with many 
hands, without so much as consulting him on any 
one article. But these things came to his Knowledge 
by Accident, whereupon he had sent for the intended 
Plan, which was in the Hands of Mr. Loxley, who 
came with it, and after shewing it to Col. Haldyman, 
and considering it, they were both of Opinion it was 
defective, and many Objections lay against it, on 
which his Honour had wrote the Commissioners a 
Letter to stop the work till he should approve the 
Plan, and know if it was an healthy spot, and that 
he proposed to desire Lord Loudon by the Post to 
spare him an Engineer to view the Situation, and 
concert with him a proper Plan ; That Three Physi- 
cians had, at his Instance, viewed it, and reported 
there was no reasonable objection to it on the account 
of Health ; That notwithstanding this Injunction the 
Commissioners still went on with their Work, and 
had the Imprudence never to give him an Answer to 
his Letter ; That he had detained his Letter to Lord 
Loudon till he should receive their Answer, but be- 
lieving they would not give any, he would send his 
letter by the Post.'' In the next month Lord Loudon 
sent Lieut. Meyer to the city to " give his Assistance 
in relation to the Construction of the Barracks, and 
desired those who would direct the undertakers of the 
Barracks would be obediant to the orders of Lieut. 
Meyer." Whether this application was successful is 
not known. Before the middle of the summer of the 
succeeding year the barracks were partially com- 
pleted and must have been occupied by troops 
organized under authority of the province, since in 
July of that year orders were sent to the commanding 
officer of the barracks to place a guard at Wicaco 
Fort. This authority could not have been undertaken 
to be exercised over the royal troops. 

Neither is it probable that more than a portion of 
the buildings were in condition to be occupied at once. 
In February, 1758, the tavern-keepers of the city 
petitioned for the removal of the soldiers quartered 
upon them " to the barracks now finished." In the 
succeeding month quarters were demanded by Brig.- 
Gen. Forbes for seventeen hundred and fifty- two men. 
The public-houses were not sufficient in accommoda- 
tions to lodge so large a number. Governor Denny 
asked of the House if the barracks could not be made 
ready. The House ordered the Provincial Commis- 
sioners to provide quarters. On the 3d of May the 
House elected Joseph Fox barrack-master, " with full 
power to do and perform every matter and thing which 
may be requisite for the comfortable accommodation 
of his majesty's troops within the Barracks lately 
erected in the city." 1 

1 In the provincial accounts are charges for payments, May 15, 1757, 
to Plunkett Fleeson, £381 16s. id. for bedding supplied to the Indians 

The Thirty-fifth Regiment of foot appears to have 
been in the city either during the winter of 1757 or 
the spring of 1758, since, on the 25th of April of that 
year, the wives of soldiers belonging to that regiment, 
" lately sent to Halifax," petitioned the Assembly, 
setting forth their destitute condition, and asked that 
they should be sent to their husbands. The House 
agreed to pay the expense if the Governor would 
consent. Whether these soldiers had been quartered 
at the barracks cannot be ascertained. 

Brig.-Gen. Forbes left at Philadelphia in July, 1758, 
in the care of Benjamin Loxley, a very extensive 
amount of ordnance, ammunition, and stores belong- 
ing to the king. There were six brass field-pieces, 
mounted, with all the apparatus connected therewith, 
empty shells, muskets, bayonets, halberts, drums, 
pistols, carbines, tents, round shot, gunpowder, and 
large numbers of other articles. 

Gen. Forbes at barracks, Raystown Camp, in Oc- 
tober, 1758, wrote to the Governor, stating that he 
would be compelled to send down to the inhabited 
parts of the country the greater portion of twelve 
hundred men, being the force under his orders. The 
object was to enable the soldiers "to recruit and fit 
themselves out for the ensuing campaign ; for were I 
to leave the whole during the winter in the uninhab- 
ited parts of the country, these corps would not be 
in a condition to march on service early in the 
spring.'' Among the things named by Col. Forbes 
as necessary " for making the soldiers' lives comfort- 
able in this severe climate during the winter" were 
for each man a second blanket in lieu of a bed, a 
flannel jacket, a new pair of breeches, two pairs of 
stockings, and a pair of shoes. In November, 1758, 
Col. Forbes wrote from Fort Du Quesne, which had 
just been captured, requesting that the barracks 
should be put in good repair and proper lodgings for 
the officers, and provision in winter-quarters was re- 
quired for Col. Montgomery's battalion of thirteen 
hundred men, and four companies of Royal Ameri- 
cans. The Assembly was appealed to by Governor 
Denny, but there was no immediate response. In 
1759, Gen. Jeffry Amherst stated to Governor Denny 
that Lieut.-Col. Morris had informed him " that some 
small difficulties had arisen at Philadelphia in rela- 
tion to quartering." Upon which he sent a copy of 
the agreement entered into between the deputy quar- 
termaster-general for the king and the selectmen of 
Boston. This had been made a standing rule by 
Gen. Amherst for the other provinces. That officer 
was pleased to say, " I have no reason to think that 
Pennsylvania would be deficient in their care and 

and soldiers at tbe hospital and barracks; John Rowan, for beer sup- 
plied to the soldiery, £50 13«. 6d.;-Sept. 15, 1757, to Joseph Fox, for 
erecting barracks, £8000. The latter may be assumed to have been the 
cost of the buildings and lot. 1757, November 8th, Joseph Fox, wood 
for the barracks and rent of the King's Hospital, £350. Fox was paid 
at flrBt £60 per annum out of the fund for his services and £50 per 
annum from the general fund. After two or three years there is note 
only of payment of £50 per annum on the general provincial expenses. 



regard for the troops sent for their defense and pro- 
tection. I make no doubt that upon sight of the 
before-mentioned agreement, they will cheerfully 
comply with it, and cause every difficulty that may 
have arisen immediately to subside." 

The Assembly was much more interested in con- 
sidering the Indian question in connection with com- 
plaints relative to the walking purchase, of 1737, 
than in making preparation for the comfort of troops. 
Alleging that the plan of operations for the year 1759 
had not been received from Great Britain, the House in 
February adjourned for two weeks. The next month 
complaints were made that attempts had been made 
in the county of Lancaster to extort billets from the 
magistrates, and that the soldiers had been quartered 
in private houses. Gen. Forbes died in Philadelphia 
in 1759, and Brig.-Gen. Stanwix was appointed in 
his place, and came to the city in March. Gen. 
Amherst himself arrived in April of the same year, 
and the Assembly being slow and obstinate about 
passing the supply bill, he sent for the Speaker 
and some of the members, and told them " that he 
would withdraw the king's forces in case they did 
not raise the same number of provincials as served 
last campaign." Governor Denny represented these 
things to the Assembly, and received from the mem- 
bers the usual justification of their conduct. By way 
of set off, complaint was made of the quartering of 
troops at Lancaster. The House said that the meas- 
ures taken there were unjustifiable and arbitrary, 
" that there was a commodious set of barracks erected 
near the city of Philadelphia capable of receiving 
all of his Majesty's Troopaln the province. That the 
building of the Barracks there was occasioned by the 
officers refusing to quarter the troops anywhere else 
than in or near the city, that they had formerly re- 
fused to quarter them at Lancaster, and that if they 
had been willing a portion of the Barracks would 
have been erected there. That a number of Rooms 
in the Barracks are now, and have been during the 
Winter, empty, and ready to receive all the Soldiers 
thus oppressively, unnecessarily, and illegally quar- 
tered in that place." The House was stubborn, and 
would not pass the supply bill unless it retained a 
provision to tax the proprietary estates. In this 
emergency, Gen. Amherst solicited Governor Denny 
" for the good of the common cause to waive the pro- 
prietary instruction, and give his consent to the bill, 
as had been done at the request of the Earl of Loudon 
on a previous occasion," promising to inform the 
king's ministers of the necessity of his so doing, that 
no inconvenience might arise to him by his action. 

In 1761, Vaughn's regiment was sent by Gen. Am- 
herst to Philadelphia. In. 1764 some of the Indians 
who were the objects of the animosity of the Paxton 
Boys were at the barracks, but were removed for 
greater security, — perhaps it would be better to say, 
so that they might more easily escape to Province 
Island. While they were at that place there were 

consultations as to what might be most proper to 
secure their safety. The Council was of opinion 
that the best method would be to send them to Sir 
William Johnson, at New York. It was observed as 
a particularly fortunate circumstance that there was 
in town a detachment of Highlanders, under the com- 
mand of Capt. Robinson, on their march to New 
York, who, at the instance of the Governor, readily 
agreed to escort the Indians as far as that city. 
These soldiers actually proceeded to execute the 
agreement, and the Indians were taken upon the 
march into New Jersey. But they were not received 
at New York. Orders were given that they should 
be stopped before entering the province. About the 
same time Governor John Penn had applied to Gen. 
Thomas Gage for the stationing of some troops in 
Philadelphia. The latter ordered three companies of 
the First Battalion of Royal Americans to come to 
the city. They were ordered to meet the Highlanders 
in New Jersey to receive from them the Indians and 
escort them back from Amboy. Capt. Schlosser had 
command of this detachment, and, having reached 
Trenton, waited for instructions. He was desired to 
resume his march and bring the Indians to the bar- 
racks, where they could be better protected than any- 
where else. After they arrived the rumors in relation 
to the assembling of the Paxton Boys, and of their 
intention to march to the city, became more alarming. 
The Governor was advised to give written instructions 
to Capt. Schlosser to defend the Indians to the utmost 
of his power, and to oppose any attempt to destroy 
them, "the riot act first being read by a proper 
civil officer." A meeting was ordered to be held at 
the State-House, at which the inhabitants of the 
town were invited to assemble with request to imme- 
diately take up arms, and put themselves under the 
command of the Governor for the defense of the 
government. It was proposed also that one hundred 
and fifty gentlemen should assist the soldiers in 
guarding the barracks on the night of February 4th. 
It was also recommended that, " upon any alarm 
made by the ringing of the bells, the inhabitants would 
turn out with their arms and repair to the barracks ; 
or, if the town should be attacked, that they would 
meet at the court-house and defend the city." Arms 
and ammunition were ordered to be sent to the bar- 
racks, with four cannon and artillery stores from the 
State-House. A number of carpenters were directed 
to be employed to erect some works at the barracks 
to make them more defensible. Spies were dispatched 
up the different roads to observe the motions of the 
rioters, and bring intelligence of their approach. The 
condition of affairs was considered critical. There 
was great alarm. But the Paxton Boys got no farther 
than Germantown, where, being met by a delegation 
from the city, there was a parley. They were remon- 
strated with, and finally, being under no authoritative 
leadership, weakened and dispersed and returned to 
their homes. 



The disposition of the Indians became, after the 
excitement had quieted, a matter of embarrassment 
to the authorities. Governor Penn again wished to 
send them to Sir William Johnson, but Gen. Gage 
objected that by such disposition they might preju- 
dice the Six Nations against the English. It was the 
desire of that officer that they should remain at Phil- 
adelphia, or be sent to the barracks at Burlington, 
where they would be removed out of the way of the 
people of Pennsylvania and proper care be taken of 

The Indians left the barracks in 1764, after having 
remained there for more than a year. In an address 
made to Governor Penn, on the occasion of their 
departure, they said that they were going back into 
the wood of Machelusing, on the Susquehanna, to 
settle there. " We think it is our first Duty to take a 
friendly leave from you by presenting our hearty 
Thanks for your great Goodness to us. We do not 
come with a String or Belt of Wampum agreeable to 
the custom among Indians, and as we cannot speak 
your tongue we must endeavor to express our grateful 
hearts by this Writing. Hoping you will accept of 
it from your poor Indians. . . . These Words come 
from us who have subscribed this address & from all 
the Indian Men, Women, & Children now at the 
Barracks, and we are your true and faithfull friends." 
This address was signed with the marks of John 
Pepunhang, Joshua, Anton, and Samy Evans. 1 

In June, 1766, a detachment of the Royal High- 
land Regiment which had been in service in the Illi- 
nois country, and had arrived at New York from 
Pensacola, was ordered by Gen. Gage to march to 
Philadelphia. This was but a single company of one 
hundred and fourteen officers and men. Gen. Gage 
two months afterward desired that provision should 
be made for a full battalion, the strength of which 
was five hundred officers and men. In 1768 the As- 
sembly passed an act for appropriating a sum of 
money for building the middle house on the west 
side of the barracks, in the Northern Liberties of the 
city of Philadelphia. 2 In 1768 the Eighteenth Regi- 
ment, Lieut.-Col. Wilkins, arrived in Philadelphia 
on their march to Lancaster and Cumberland, and 
put up for a short time at the barracks. Gen. 
Gage wrote to Lieutenant-Governor Penn in June, 
1769, that the Thirty-fourth Regiment, quartered in 
Philadelphia, were shortly to embark for Ireland going 
from the city. Capt. Chapman, of the Eighteenth, 
was there in 1772. Gen. Frederick Haldiman wrote 
to Governor Penn in July, 1773, that transports with 
his majesty's royal regiment of artillery had arrived 
at New York ; that one company was to be stationed 

1 In " Unitas Fratrum," No. 4, are the names of fifty -five Indian men, 
women, and children who died at the Barracks during the occupation, 
and were buried by Moravians. 

2 The middle house fronted on Third Street, and was occupied as 
officers 1 quarters ; in later times it was universally known as the Com- 
missioners' Hall of the Northern Liberties. 

at Philadelphia, and requested that the barracks should 
be placed in order for their reception. The Eighteenth 
or Royal Irish Regiment was at barracks for some 
time, and left for Boston in September, 1774. It is 
probable that they were not succeeded in the tenancy 
of the building by any other British troops. 

On the 1st of November, 1775, the Assembly of 
Pennsylvania directed that Mr. Miles and Mr. Dough- 
erty should deliver to Joseph Fox, the barrack-master, 
the following order for providing necessaries and 
quartering troops : 

"In Assembly, Nov. 1, 1775. 

" Upon Motion : Ordered that the Barrack-Master do forthwith put 
the Barracks near this city into proper repair for receiving the Troops 
now raising in this Province, and that the said Barrack-Master do in 
future receive and Comply with such orders from the Committee of 
Safety as they may find necessary to Issue for quartering Troops in the 
said Barracks. 

(Signed) " Ch's. Moore, Cl'Ic Aas'y." 

The same committee was ordered to ascertain how 
soon the barracks would be ready for the reception 
of troops, and what number of firelocks were made 
for the county. These directions mark the period 
when, from the occupancy of the regular British 
troops, the barracks passed into the tenancy of the 
soldiers who were opposed to them. Barrack-Master 
Fox, who afterward became a Tory, had not yet 
shown his disaffection. He reported that the bar- 
racks would be ready for the reception of the troops 
in about ten days. Capt. Thomas Proctor, of the 
artillery, was allowed admission to the barracks on 
the 7th of November with his company, and it was 
directed that he should be furnished with the bedding 
lately belonging to the royal artillery company. 

The Council of Safety three weeks afterward granted 
to Maj. Anthony J. Morris the use of the large house 
at the barracks "for the field-officers of the Pennsyl- 
vania battalion now raising." The board gave di- 
rections to Barrack-Master Fox to deliver the key of 
the said house to Maj. Morris. 

In August, 1776, the deputy quartermaster-general 
was directed, if he could not obtain sufficient quar- 
ters for the troops which were coming to the city, to 
place them in the several places of worship in the 
city in turn. Notice of this intention was ordered to 
be given to the wardens or elders of the various con- 
gregations. Authority was also given to occupy 
private houses which were empty for the same pur- 
pose. Maj. Lewis Nicola succeeded Fox as barrack- 
master as early as the middle of March, 1776, at 
which time he was directed to deliver to Col. Arthur 
St. Clair and other officers of battalions such neces- 
saries as they might want from the supplies at the 

An estimate of the expense of converting the old jail 
into a barracks in 1776 is found in the Pennsylvania 
Archives, vol. iv. page 715. It was evidently intended 
for a small number of men, not more than sufficient 
for a city guard. The estimates were for about one 
hundred and twenty-one bedsteads, one of them of 



rather large proportions, a mess-table and bench 
of generous size, and twenty other tables, with forty 

Bucks County militia were lodged at the United 
States barracks in September, 1777, at which time 
orders were issued to them to send a guard of four 
men to Robin Hood Ford (Garrigues, afterward 
MendenhalFs Ferry) over the Schuylkill, four men 
to the Upper Ferry, four men to the bridge (Middle 
Ferry), and four men to Gray's Ferry, to take care 
of the artillery at those places. 

As appurtenances to the barracks, in 1777, before 
the British occupancy, there were two hospitals; 
that which was used for ordinary diseases was in 
Front Street, opposite the Noah's Ark Tavern, at the 
corner of Bloody Lane, or Noble Street, and probably 
upon the barrack grounds; the Smallpox Hospital 
was in Pine Street, exactly where is not known. It 
was under the care of the barrack-master, and nurses 
were employed to take care of it. Dr. Glentworth, 
in January, 1777, was superintendent of a " smallpox 
hospital, 2 doors above Peter Knight's." The sick 
quarters in January, 1777, were at Semple's store, 
Sproat's store, which was immediately opposite 
Semple's, and McElroy's store, also at John Shields' 
house. Mary Traker was a nurse at John Shields', 
and was frequently spoken of as a nurse at the 
Pine Street Smallpox Hospital. There were sick 
soldiers at Sm.eiler's, at the corner of Seventh and 
Arch Streets, and at Sneider's, in Front Street, and 
also at Evan Morgan's, on the common. 

Occasional glimpses of the condition of the barracks 
after they came into the possession of the common- 
wealth of Pennsylvania are to be had in the reports 
published by Col. Nicola. Thus he said, in August, 
1776, " The troops that daily come to the barracks are 
much displeased at not having necessarys to dress 
their victuals. Potts I have enough in store, but 
they will not take unless cleaned, yet constantly 
return them dirty. There is a great deficiency of 
buckets." In November of the same year he men- 
tions that a consultation was held among the officers, 
with Col. Hampton and others, as to the disposition 
of rooms, from which it appears that the place was 
crowded. " It was agreed that room should be made 
in the wing occupied by the German battalion for 
Capt. Doyle's company, and that the cellars should 
be filled with men. This arrangement will make 20 
rooms as soon as the Flying Camp men march out, 
and 50 cellars for the reception of Troops. In con- 
sequence of this I have directed that the cellars 
should be cleaned and fitted for the reception of men. 
... 18 wagons with sick men from the camp and 4 
this morning came to the barracks. The men say 
more wagons are on the road, and 2 shallops are 
coming down the river." A few days afterward the 
barrack-master wrote, " As these unsettled times may 
occasion many removes in the Barracks, and that most 
of the rooms are supplied with bedsteads, tables, and 

benches, which cannot be removed into store-rooms, 
it is necessary to have them fastened up. As locks 
are attended with much inconveniency, occasioned by 
the men's loosing the keys and putting the locks out 
of order, I prefer padlocks, which may be taken into 
the stores whenever the rooms are occupied. I have 
hitherto found it impossible to procure the number I 
want. I propose advertising this day for them, in 
expectation that some smith in the neighborhood will 
undertake it." Three days afterward he complained 
that Capt. Doyle had not returned one-half of the 
bed-cases received from the German battalion, and 
that certain utensils had not been returned. After 
Nicola became town-major he issued standing orders 
to the garrison of Philadelphia in regard to returns 
and other matters (Penna. Archives, vol. iv. page 184). 
Among them were the following: 

" V. When any Troops belonging to the Garrison, or on their way to 
Camp are quartered out of the Barracks, a sergeant or corporal from 
each corps is to attend constantly at the Barracks to be ready to carry 
Orders to their respective corps, for which purpose a room in the Bar- 
racks muBt be appointed for their Reception. 

" VI. An adjutant in rotation is constantly to remain in the Barracks 
from which he ie not to depart on any account till relieved, except when 
he goes to the Town-Major to receive orders, but be ready to receive and 
distribute orders. 

"VII. Whenever the Drummer beats the Adjutants' call, or first 
part of the Troop, all the Adjutants in the Barracks and orderly Ser- 
geants or corporals from corps quartered out of the Barracks, are to re- 
pair to the Parade, receive orders, and distribute them to their respective 

"IX. A Field-Officer whenever there are four in Town, when not a 
captain, to attend daily at the Barracks and do the duty of the Officer of 
the day." 

When the British army entered Philadelphia the 
barracks were again occupied by the royal troops, 
whether by regiments or companies is not known. 
Soldiers were encamped in the open fields near, north, 
south, and west of the more luxurious quarters. There 
is no record by which may be ascertained what regi- 
ments or organizations were accommodated at the 

Discipline was rather loose in the Northern Liber- 
ties after the British evacuation, and the soldiers were 
sometimes uuruly. In December, 1779, complaint was 
made to the Supreme Executive Council " of great 
irregularities at the barracks and destruction of the 
buildings ; and also that there is danger of blood- 
shed from the disputes between the soldiers and the 
neighboring inhabitants, and that the same are owing 
to the neglect of the proper officers providing wood." 
Measures were taken to prevent further mischief. 
The supply of fuel was a great difficulty at this time. 
In order to prevent, in some degree, the scarcity, the 
Council had ordered that the wood growing on a 
tract of land on the west side of the Schuylkill, be- 
longing to some persons residing in Great Britain, 
ghould be cut down and brought to the city for the 
use of the poor, the same to be valued and accounted 
for when required. In pursuance of these orders, 
William Bradford, Tench Francis, James Ash, Isaac 
Melchor, William Hall, Andrew Tybout, David Dun- 



can, William Miller, William Forbes, Thomas Shields, 
and Joseph Copperthwaite had cut down considerable 
quantities of the wood for those uses. They found 
themselves confronted by a person called William 
Wood, who made claim to the property, and took 
possession of some of it. The Supreme Executive 
Council proceeded promptly, and ordered Wood to 
be arrested and brought before them by the sheriff of 
the county. The consequence was that Wood was 
soon convinced of his error, " made some acknowl- 
edgments,"' and being reprimanded, was dismissed. 
Probably some of this wood went to the barracks. 
The necessity of the case and the want of fuel led to 
considerable destruction there. A committee of the 
Council, which had been detailed to make an exami- 
nation of the condition of the barracks, made a very 
unpleasant report : 

" That they find them in a very ruinous condition, all the Bedsteads 
(except a few in the Invalid quarter) missing having been burned, as we 
are informed, for want of Wood. Almost all the Glazing of the windows 
broken, plastering pulled down, the laths & partitions cut up to light 
fires. The floors much cut up and injured. The suldiers having brought 
their wood into the rooms, and there cut up for their fires ; the rooms 
&■ galleries are so full of filth and ordure as to render these places ex- 
tremely offensive; in short the whole of the buildings are in very bad 
order. . . . That upon a Bpeciall inquiry what Wood had been served 
out, and what prospects there are, it appears to the committee that great 
part of the Fall & Winter there has been only half allowance, and that 
irregularly served. That they have been occasionally 2 days without 
Wood, even to cook their victuals, By which means the Buildings and 
Fences in the neighborhood had Suffered, which had occasioned great 
disturbance among the Inhabitants, so as not only to break the peace, 
but to endanger the lives of both soldiers and citizens ; that there is not 
at present any stock of wood or any other supply than from day to day, 
and that so insufficient that unless there is some effectual reform in case 
of bad roads or bad weather which may be expected at this season, they 
will be destitute, and the like abuses on the buildings and in the neigh- 
borhood probably renewed." 

The number of soldiers who might be accommo- 
dated at the barracks was not stated, nor the number 
of soldiers who were in quarters at that time. In 
regard to the officers there were more than enough. 
Isaac Melchior was barrack-master; Gen. Gibbs 
Jones, chief barrack-master and captain of artillery ; 
Christian Schaffer, assistant barrack-master and super- 
intendent of the carpenters; John Fauntz, assistant 
barrack-master. Beside these principal officers there 
were three superintendents of wagoners and wood- 
cutters, an issuer of wood, two clerks, and t